About a hundred solidarity activists under Free Burma Coalition – Philippines (FBC-Phils) today staged a protest action in front of the Myanmar Embassy in Makati City and denounced the Burmese junta’s election laws, which according to the group is a mere strategy that “effectively excludes democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi and cripples all political opposition parties while putting the military government to greater advantage”.
Said protest action in the Philippines is part of the Global Campaign on Burma’s 2010 Military Elections initiated by Burma democracy supporters around the world.
FBC-Phils urged the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) including the United Nations (UN) not to recognize the election laws of Burma’s military rulers which the group described as “one of the tragic results of the junta’s sham roadmap to democracy.”
A GARBAGE NOT WORTH RECYCLING
In front of the embassy, the group placed a “huge trash can” containing all anti-democratic policies of Burma’s military regime, the sham roadmap to democracy, including the new election laws.
“Unless the military rulers of Burma seriously initiate tangible political reforms, the 2010 elections will be widely perceived as incredible and undemocratic. Any election law designed only to ensure victory for the military dictators is a garbage not worth recycling”, says FBC-Phils spokesperson Egoy Bans.
He continued, “there are issues of election credibility and transparency but instead of employing an all-inclusive process, the regime opted to bypass all norms of decency by creating an election law in a very secretive and exclusive manner.”
On Monday last week. The military rulers of Burma enacted five election-related laws, two of which have now been made public. Three more are to be unveiled in the coming weeks.
The election law also prohibited detained democracy icon Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and the rest of 2,100 political prisoners from participating in the elections as the law states “anyone convicted by a court of law cannot run for election to the two houses of Parliament.” In another attempt to marginalize the opposition parties in Burma, the ruling junta has used the new election laws to officially nullify the result of polls in 1990 that gave Aung San Suu Kyi’s opposition party a landslide victory.
FBC-Phils reiterates its demands that include the unconditional release of Aung San Suu Kyi and the rest of thousands of political prisoners, cessation of hostilities against ethnic nationalities and an all-inclusive review of the 2008 Nargis – Constitution.
TIME TO STEP-DOWN
Bans added, “if the junta is still unable and unwilling to institute democratic reforms, we think that it’s high time for the international community to act decisively and collectively urge the military regime to peacefully relinquish the state power and transfer the government control to the elected leaders of Burma in 1990.”
He explained, “the military regime has been fooling the world for so long now. All diplomatic attempts to democratize Burma have miserably failed. It’s no longer funny to play TOM and JERRY with those hard-headed generals in Rangoon.”
NOT A SOLUTION TO THE PROBLEM
The ASEAN and UN, according to Bans must now realize that the junta’s so-called roadmap to democracy is not the solution to Burma’s complex political problems.
He stressed, “this junta’s roadmap to democracy is not a solution to the problem. In fact the roadmap is the main problem. How could you call the roadmap a remedy if in fact it is the disease?”
“From the national convention that was tasked to draft the constituion under military terms, to the national referendum pursued amidst calamity, it’s undeniable that the roadmap is a complete sham. It’s a one-sided process that will just prolong and legitimize the military junta’s grip to power,” Bans said.
“Now it is the duty of the international community especially the UN and the ASEAN to ensure that military rulers in Rangoon abide by the international human rights standards and laws in conducting its 2010 elections,” Bans concluded.
Organizations who participated in the rally were: Alliance of Progressive Labor (APL), Partido ng Manggagawa (PM), Kongreso ng Pagkakaisa ng Maralitang Taga-lungsod (KPML), Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP), Initiatives for International Dialogue (IID) and the Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM) ###.
For inquiries, kindly refer to:
Gani Abunda: (+63)929-4109647, Egoy N. Bans (+63)920 9132472
c/o Initiatives for International Dialogue (IID) +632 435 2900; +632 911020
This post is in: Press Releases