Thu 29 Jan 2009
Filed under: Inside Burma,News
In a major development the minutes of a leaked secret meeting of Burma’s Army Commanders said the leadership of the main opposition party – the National League for Democracy – is likely to split and that a faction is likely to emerge to contest the ensuing 2010 general elections.
The Commander of the Northern Military Command Maj-Gen Soe Win, during a recent meeting, told his fellow army commanders and officers that a faction is likely to emerge from a rift in the NLD to form another political party under a different name to contest the election.
According to the document, a copy of which is in Mizzima’s possession, Soe Win made the comment while speaking positively of the junta’s plan to go ahead with its roadmap to democracy.
But Nyan Win, spokesperson of the NLD dismissed the possibility of the NLD splitting saying, the junta is voicing its hidden wish.
“They [the junta] wishes that NLD would split,” said Nyan Win, refuting any possibility of a break.
Nyan Win further said, the NLD has not even taken up 2010 election as an agenda in their meetings and does not consider it necessary as yet.
“We do not see the necessity of discussing the election,” he added.
However, earlier on January 2, party members from Magwe Division branch in a letter urged the NLD central committee in Rangoon to call a meeting.
Khin Saw Htay, vice-chairman of the Magwe NLD branch said they sent a letter urging the central party executives to call a nation-wide meeting to discuss the stance of the NLD for the forthcoming elections.
“The letter urged the central party to call a meeting of party members from the whole country and to discuss how to face the period in 2010,” Khin Saw Htay told Mizzima.
She said party members want to have a clear understanding of the NLD’s stand on the election.
With party leader Tin Oo and Aung San Suu Kyi imprisoned, Khin Saw Htay said, the NLD has a record of suddenly changing its political stand in the past.
“In the past, the party said it will not take part in the 1990 election but it did. Again they said they won’t attend the national convention but it did,” she said.
However, Khin Saw Htay said the request for a nation-wide meeting does not mean a break up, rather the members want to stick to a single policy.
NLD, led by detained Nobel Peace Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, posted a landslide victory in Burma’s last general election in 1990. But the ruling junta refused to hand over power and detained several of its leaders