News

List of Approved Candidates for Yangon Election Released

By Thazin Hlaing 19 February 2019

YANGON — The Yangon City Development Committee (YCDC) on Monday released a list of the 274 candidates for the March 31 municipal election.

They include candidates for the ruling National League for Democracy, the military-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party and some independents.

Of the 277 people who applied to run, “one applicant withdrew his application, and we rejected two others because they did not meet the eligibility criteria,” U Aung Khine, chairman of the Yangon Election Commission, told The Irrawaddy.

“[One of] their parents was not a citizen when they were born,” he said.

According to eligibility criteria, candidates must have been born to Myanmar citizens, must be more than 25 years old, must have lived for three consecutive years in the township they intend to represent, must not owe taxes to the YCDC, and must be loyal to the country.

There are a total 105 seats up for grabs, 99 at the township level — three seats each in 33 townships — and six for the YCDC’s executive board.

The executive board originally consisted of nine members — the mayor, four appointees and four elected representatives — but has been expanded to include two more elected seats.

One of the six elected representatives will become the vice mayor, a post created by the new YCDC Law to ease the workload of the mayor of Myanmar’s largest city and commercial capital.

The campaign period will run from Feb. 28 to Mar. 29.

Yangon saw its first-ever municipal elections in December 2014.

In that poll, only one person per household was allowed to cast a ballot. This time, the election is open to everyone 18 years old or over.

In addition to creating two more elected executive board posts, the new YCDC Law, which took effect in June, allows for the replacement and recall of both appointed and elected members. It also aligns the term of the YCDC with that of the Union president and stipulates that municipal elections must be held within three months of a new Union government taking office.

Translated from Burmese by Thet Ko Ko.

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