15 More Parties to Register

By KYAW THEIN KHA Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Fifteen parties have confirmed that they will register for this year's election.

The parties will join two other political organizations—the Union of Myanmar Federation of National Politics (formerly known as the Union of Myanmar National Political Force) and the 88 Generation Student Youths (Union of Myanmar)—that registered on Monday to contest the election.

Four of the parties planning to register previously belonged to the National Political Alliance (NPA), a group consisting of nine small political parties that was formed after the Burmese junta announced its election law on March 8.

Under the law, all parties must register by May 7.

Two of the four former NPA members, the Demo NLD and the Reconciliation Research and Analysis Study Group, will register together as the United Democratic Party. The new party plans to contest nationwide.

The two other former NPA members will contest the election regionally. The Nationalist NLD (which, like the Demo NLD, includes former members of the NLD) will contest in Mandalay Division and the Union of Myanmar National Force Arakan State will contest in Arakan State.

So far, nine parties have told The Irrawaddy that they will contest nationwide, while another six parties say they intend to run in their respective regions.

The following parties have registered or plan to register to contest the election nationally:

  1. Union of Myanmar Federation of National Politics (registered)
  2. 88 Generation Student Youths (Union of Myanmar) (registered)
  3. National Unity Party
  4. National Political Alliance
  5. Union Democratic Alliance
  6. Democratic Party
  7. Union Solidarity and Development Association (expected to form more than one party)
  8. United Democratic Party
  9. Peace and Diversity Party
  10. A party formed by Phyo Min Thein (the name of the party hasn't been announced yet)
  11. A party formed by self-described “Myanmar Bengalis” (the name of the party hasn't been announced)

The following parties will contest regionally:

  1. Kachin State Progressive Party
  2. The Union of Myanmar National Force Arakan State
  3. Mon National Democratic Front
  4. Karen People's Party
  5. Nationalist NLD
  6. Scientific National Politics Party, based in Maymyo (Pyin Oo Lwin)

The following parties contested in the 1990 election but have not yet registered for this year's election:

  1. National League for Democracy
  2. National Unity Party
  3. Shan National League for Democracy
  4. Union Pa-o National Organization
  5. Shan State Kokang Democratic Party
  6. Mro or Khami National Solidarity Organization
  7. Lahu National Development Party
  8. Union Karen League
  9. Kokang Democracy and Unity Party
  10. Wa National Development Party

The NLD will decide on whether to register or not on March 29, but the party's leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, has already stated that she is not in favor of the move. The NUP, which ran as the main junta-backed party during the 1990 election, said it has decided to contest the election and will register next week.


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