Myanmar’s detained pro—democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi has urged people to expose any election law violations they come across during upcoming national polls, even as she suggested her supporters refrain from voting.
Even though Suu Kyi’s now—disbanded National League for Democracy party is boycotting the November 7 election, the process should not be ignored, her lawyer Nyan Win quoted her as saying. People have the right to file police complaints if the election laws are violated, she said.
Ms. Suu Kyi made the comments on Tuesday. Mr. Nyan Win recounted them to reporters on Wednesday.
“Democracy, human rights and rule of law should be considered as the political process,” Ms. Suu Kyi was quoted as saying, explaining that the election by itself should not be seen as satisfying the people’s political needs.
The NLD is boycotting because it found the election rules were unfair. Critics have called the vote a sham to cement the power of the military, which has tightly ruled Myanmar for a half—century.
Ms. Suu Kyi said people who had wanted to vote for the NLD could refrain from voting instead.
The government announced the election date on Aug. 13, ending months of speculation on when exactly Myanmar’s first election in two decades vote would be held. Political parties were only given two weeks until Aug. 30 to submit their candidate lists. Ms. Suu Kyi said that was short notice and amounted to showing disrespect to the people.
Ms. Suu Kyi said the elections would be neither free nor fair without freedom of expression and a free press, according to Mr. Nyan Win.
The last general elections in 1990 were won overwhelming by Ms. Suu Kyi’s party, but the military refused to honour the results.
Keywords: Myanmar elections