The Irrawaddy

Yangon Municipal Elections Expected to be Held in December

YANGON — Municipal elections are expected to be held in December following the promulgation of the new Yangon municipal law, said Daw Than Myint Aung, an appointed member on the executive board of the Yangon municipality.

“We expect to hold [municipal elections] in December,” she said.

The elections will be held according to the new municipal law and existing by-laws “because it will take a long time if we wait to hold elections until after we draft new by-laws,” she added.

The Yangon City Development Committee (YCDC)’s executive board initially consisted of nine members: the mayor, four appointed members and four elected individuals, but it was later expanded to add two elected positions.

The new YCDC law, which supplements the 2013 municipal law, came into effect on June 28.

The commercial hub saw its first-ever municipal elections in six decades in December 2014.

One month after the National League for Democracy took office in April 2016, the Yangon mayor announced that the YCDC by-laws had been amended so that the elected members’ terms coincided with the government.

Then the Yangon chief minister sent notices of dismissal to the elected members who previously anticipated that they would serve until the next elections.

The new YCDC laws introduces changes to the elections, as well as replacement and recall of municipality members, said Yangon Region lawmaker U Hla Htay, who is also a member of YCDC law drafting committee.

According to the new law, the term of the committee coincides with the president, and municipal elections shall be held within three months after a new government takes office.

“The existing committee will serve until new committee members are elected,” he said.

The new law includes 31 chapters with 337 provisions, including penalties for breaching the code of conduct for civil servants.

The law also creates a new post of vice mayor to ease the workload of the mayor of Myanmar’s largest city.

Additional Reporting by Thazin Hlaing

Translated from Burmese by Thet Ko Ko.