Myanmar official media stressed on Sunday the need to start a transition period in accordance with the new state constitution in anticipation of 2010 multi-party general election.
“This is concerned not only with an individual group but with the entire national people including all the national race groups,” the New Light of Myanmar newspaper said in an article under the pen name of Kyaw Ye Min.
The article disclosed that the government has initiated a programme for ethnic armed groups, which have cease fired and returned to the legal fold, to be formed into frontier forces under the control of the Commander-in-chief of the Defense Services.
“The government will take responsibilities for security of their assets and lives. The leaders of the peace groups will have the rights to stand for 2010 election and take seats in the administrative organs of the regions concerned in consistent with the law,” the article said.
The article quoted local ethnic sources as saying that the Kachin Independence Organisation (KIO) recently allowed its six top members, led by vice Chair Dr Tuja to resign and form Kachin State Progressive Party (KSPP) and run for 2010 general election.
The KIO itself, which returned to the legal fold in 1994, is coordinating matters with the government on the formation of a frontier force under the name of KRGF, it said.
The article also quoted another local ethnic sources as saying that the New Mon State Party (NMSP) peace group, which returned to the legal fold in 1995, will also form a political party to run for the election, led by resigned central committee members.
Since the present government came to power in late 1988, 17 anti-government major ethnic armed groups and over 20 small groups were claimed to have returned to the legal fold by signing respective ceasefire agreements with the government.
In Kachin state, there established some two special regions for the resettlement of Kachin ethnic peace groups with the New Democratic Army (NDA-Kachin) in Kachin State Special Region-1 and KIO in Kachin State Special Region-2.
Under the government’s fifth step of its seven-step roadmap announced in 2003, a multi-party democracy general election is to be held in 2010 in accordance with the 2008 new state constitution to produce parliament representatives and form a new civilian government.