Myanmar’s military junta plans probe of last year’s election

Myanmar’s military junta plans probe of last year’s election
Buddhist nuns wearing face masks and shields to help curb the spread of the coronavirus walk to collect cash and rice from devotees Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021, in Yangon, Myanmar. Source: AP
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Daily US Times: Myanmar’s new leader General Min Aung Hlaing said the military government installed after coup plans an investigation into alleged voter fraud in last year’s election and will also prioritize the coronavirus outbreak and the economy, a state newspaper reported Wednesday.

Gen. Min Aung Hlaing announced the moves on Tuesday at the first meeting of his new government in the capital Naypyitaw, the state-run Global New Light of Myanmar newspaper said.

The military had said one of its reasons for ousting the former government of Aung San Suu Kyi was because it failed to properly investigate its allegations of alleged widespread irregularities in last year’s election.

The state Union Election Commission four days before the coup had declared there were no significant problems with the vote.

The military has declared it will hold power for a year under a state of emergency, and then hold elections whose winner will take over government.

In the November 2020 election, Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) party captured 396 out of 476 seats contested in the lower and upper houses of Parliament. The main opposition party, the military-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party, won only 33 seats in the Parliament.

The military is automatically allocated 25% of the seat in the combined houses under the 2008 Constitution that came into effect under a previous military government.

The state newspaper reported that General Min Aung Hlaing told Cabinet members that a new Union Election Commission “would examine the voting data to find correct results, and actions would be taken accordingly in the process.”″

The General described the Commission filled with independent and unbiased personnel.

He said voter lists would be scrutinized against family household registrations.

Min Aung Hlaing also said that coronavirus containment measures taken by Suu Kyi’s government would be continued.

Myanmar, also known as Burma, has confirmed more than 140,600 cases including some 3,100 deaths. Its health care infrastructure is one of the weakest in Asia, according to U.N. surveys.

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