ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
The Myanmar Parliament opens
Meeting at the presumably auspicious time of 8:55 a.m. (the Myanmar generals frequently consult fortune tellers), Myanmar’s Parliament opened on Monday in the capital, Naypyidaw. Security was tight, media reported. With the opening of the bicameral Parliament, the military junta that has ruled Myanmar since 1988 was dissolved.
A quarter of the seats in the parliament are reserved for the military and a military-backed party controls more than 80 percent of the rest.
In line with the new parliament, neighboring Thailand has led an offensive to have economic sanctions lifted. Speaking by an audio feed to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzeralnd, junta opponent, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, urged the forum attendees to invest in Myanmar.
The new parliament will not resemble most other parliaments in the rest of the world. Myanmar’s in-exile media report that parliamentary questions must be submitted 10 days in advance.
A significant issue is whether Myanmar’s top general, Than Shwe, 78, will become president, the most powerful job under the new Constitution, but one that requires him to resign as commander in chief.
Meanwhile, the military government is selling off buildings, factories and state-run companies, mostly to allies and family members of the country’s military leaders.
One should not expect great changes in Myanmar because of this governance system, however, the evolution of this new government in the next few years will be of interest.
Letters that do not contain full contact information cannot be published.
Letters become the property of AseanAffairs and may be republished in any format.
They typically run 150 words or less and may be edited
submit your comment in the box below