Uncertainty Reigns Over Who Will Chair Danu Self-Administered Area

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Despite the National League for Democracy (NLD) winning over 80-percent of votes in the recent race in Danu Self-administered Region, it’s still unclear if a candidate from the incumbent party will be elected the chairperson because Burma’s 2008 Constitution allows the military to appoint MPs that can decide the leader for the region in southern Shan State. 

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Danu people who support NLD

Ma Ma Lay, NLD’s MP-elect for House of Nationalities, explained that the chair and administration body would be  decided by MPs elected in the recent race and unelected MPs appointed by the military.

“There are four MPs elected for Danu Self-administered Region, as well as three MPs, who are unelected representatives from the Army. These three military MPs can elect the chairperson of the administration body.”

The NLD won three seats out of the seven seats available in Danu and the military backed Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) got only one. But because the USDP and military MP are aligned, Ma Ma Lay suspects the USDP candidate will be elected.

Article 276/1-2 and Article 4 of the Constitution allows both elected MPs and military’s MPs to elect the chairman and administration body for Danu Region by secret vote if negotiations between the political parties don’t proceed smoothly. 

NLD tried to amend it during a parliamentary session in 2016 but failed, Nyi Lay Chan, parliamentarian for Pindaya township, told SHAN. 

“The NLD won 6 out of the 7 constituencies in Danu Self-Administered Region in all the houses. We will see whether the military MPs will support the NLD that won 6 seats or the USDP that won only one seat,” Ko Pyi Pai Muu, from Pindaya, told SHAN. 

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