Burma poll rigging charge ‘sham’: state press

11-May-2012 Intellasia | AFP | 7:01 AM Print This Post

Myanmar state media on Wednesday said claims of ballot tampering made by Aung San Suu Kyi’s opposition party during landmark recent by-elections were found to be “groundless” by an official probe.

Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) had alleged that the check box for its candidates on ballot sheets in several towns had been covered in wax which could be rubbed off later to cancel the vote.

“It was a groundless complaint… such false accusation could harm the image of Myanmar’s by-election closely watched by the world; and legal action should be lodged against the false grumbler,” said a report in the New Light of Myanmar.

The English-language state mouthpiece said an investigation by teams from the country’s Union Election Commission found no evidence of ballot tampering in 10 townships under scrutiny.

“Waxed ballot complaint by NLD a sham, suggests UEC investigation,” it said in a prominent front page headline.

The NLD won 43 of the 44 constituencies where it fielded candidates in the April 1 by-elections, which propelled veteran democracy campaigner Suu Kyi into parliament.

It reported widespread electoral abuses and in the run-up to the vote complained about campaign irregularities, including alleged intimidation of candidates.

A 2010 general election, won by the military’s political proxies, was marred by complaints of cheating and the exclusion of Suu Kyi, who was released from seven straight years of house arrest shortly afterwards.

Suu Kyi was sworn in as a member of parliament last week, opening a new chapter after the Nobel laureate’s near quarter-century struggle against authoritarian rule.



Category: Regional

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