Tue 25 Mar 2014
Filed under: Inside Burma,News,Protest
The protesters gathered at Nyangyigon playground carrying placards calling to amend or abolish Section 436 of the constitution. The protesters began the demonstration by singing the national anthem and saluting the Myanmar flag.
“A new State can’t be built through feelings of anger and hate. We heartily supported the decision of the NLD to participate in the by-elections in 2012. We helped the by-elections a lot to be free and fair. This was because we wanted national reconciliation,” Ko Ko Gyi, general-secretary of the ’88 Generation Peace and Open Society, told the demonstration.
“Despite disliking the 2008 Constitution, Aung San Suu Kyi took part in the by-elections. Although the constitution was one-sided, we wanted the country to be transformed peacefully. We kept a watchful eye on the by-elections. The NLD said it competed in the elections because it wanted to amend the 2008 Constitution from the beginning. We, the ’88 Generation activists, were imprisoned because of our opposition to the one-sided measures of the National Convention held in Nyaunghninbin before the emergence of the constitution.”
Ko Ko Gyi said that despite his group’s distaste for the constitution it is determined to make amendments to the 2008 Constitution as it would like to see the country reform peacefully.
“We also pointed out that unjust clauses described in the constitution would be amended according to the election pledges of the NLD. We made decisions on the amendments by meeting with ethnic armed groups and external political and democratic forces, laying down a three-point decision at the silver ceremony of ‘Four Eights Unrest.’ We met with Aung San Suu Kyi to accomplish this decision of constitutional amendment in Nay Pyi Taw. After the meeting, we agreed on collaborative efforts to amend the constitution,” he said.
Ko Ko Gyi said the activists met for a second time at Suu Kyi’s residence with the executive committee of the NLD. The groups released a joint-statement declaring that they would work together to amend Section 436 in Chapter 12 of the constitution by using peaceful and just ways and means.