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KSPP to appeal for approval to EC for third and final time

The Kachin State Progressive Party (KSPP) leaders will appeal for the third and final time to the Union Election Commission for approval for the party in the middle of July...

The Kachin State Progressive Party (KSPP) leaders will appeal for the third and final time to the Union Election Commission for approval for the party in the middle of July so that it can contest the elections in Burma.

KSPP leader Dr. Tu Ja explained the delay over getting approval by the Election Commission to party members and Kachin people on July 3 at the party’s main office in Myitkyina. Photo: Kachin News Group.

Party leaders explained the delay over getting approval by the EC to party members and the Kachin people on July 3 at the party’s main office in Myitkyina, northern Burma, said party functionaries.

KSPP leader Dr. Manam Tu Ja, who is former No. 2 vice president of Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) went into the explanation about the inordinate delay in the approval by the EC, located in the country’s capital Naypyitaw, said participants.

Dr. Tu Ja told Kachin News Group, that the party is on “under consideration status” by the EC since April because the party is seen as having ties with the KIO. And the EC is still watching whether the KIO will transform its armed wing to the junta-proposed Border Guard Force (BGF). The KIO has all along rejected the proposal.

He pointed out that the party has repeatedly sought to explain to the EC that it has no link with the KIO and it is keen to contest elections later this year from Kachin State.

Over 300 participants, including party delegates from different areas in Kachin State and residents of Myitkyina were present at the party’s meeting, said party officials.

Intent on pursuing the approval issue party delegates are going to depart for Naypyitaw to meet EC officials on July 16 for a final appeal, said Dr. Tu Ja.

He told KNG, “If the EC does not come up with a clear answer and uses dilatory tactics yet again, then we have to realize that it does not want to grant approval.”

Earlier the party appealed twice to the EC for approval on May 7 and June 16 but was advised to await a decision both times.

The KSPP was formed in early 2009 by the Kachin State Interim Committee (KSIC), which was formed by the KIO and the New Democratic Army-Kachin, led by Zahkung Ting Ying, which in turn was transformed into BGF and Kachin Nationals Consultative Assembly (KNCA).

The KSPP has 60 central committee members, 15 general party workers and over 2,000 party members.  

The party started its organizational activities in 2009 among the Kachin ethnics but stopped such activities over two months ago, given the lack of approval from the EC.

The EC, with obvious instructions from the junta brass is sitting on the approval. However the regime encouraged another Kachin group, who were members of Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) backed by it, to float a new Kachin party to marginalize the KSPP and others.

The two USDP general secretaries Brig-Gen Thein Zaw, Minister of Post, Communication and Telegraphs, and U Aung Thaung, Minister of Industry-1, advised Kachin State based USDP members to float the Unity and Democracy Party of Kachin State (UDPKS) in the last week of June.

The new Kachin party is led by businessman Duwa Hkyet Hting Nan and the party’s registration was accepted on July 2 by the EC and now it needs approval to contest the election, according to state-run New Light of Myanmar.

The junta’s USDP, led by Prime Minister Gen-Thein Sein is the only party which is widely into election campaign in Kachin State. They are wooing voters with Chinese-made CDMA mobile phones, CDMA landline telephones, and cash.