Friday, January 22, 2010

USDA woos Muslims in Kachin state ahead of elections

By Phanida

Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – The Union Solidarity and Development Association (USDA) is out to woo the Muslim community living in Myitkyina since early this month for the forthcoming 2010 general elections.

Though the 2010 Electoral Law is yet to be enacted and promulgated by the junta, some political parties and organizations including USDA have been allowed to start campaign.

A delegation led by Khin Maung Latt, elder brother of Burma’s Postal and Telecommunication Minister Brig. Gen. Thein Zaw, who is a candidate in the elections in Kahcin State, where a majority are Christians, is organizing Muslims at mosques in Myitkyina.

He told the Muslim community that peace and religious equality has been achieved during military rule so they should vote for Brig. Gen. Thein Zaw representing the USDA and nominated by the junta,” an attendee at one of the mosques told Mizzima.
(JEG's: Is it because of peace and religious equality under the junta that the Rohingya are stateless?)

The campaign team comprised Myitkyina native Khin Maung Latt, BSPP party member and former Township (administrative) Council Secretary, Kachin State USDA Executive Committee member Dr. Khin Maung Tun, retired Maj. Myint Swe, and retired Lt. Col. Myo Swe, who is mobilizing minority Muslims in Myitkyina.

They concluded the poll campaign in three mosques of the officially permitted seven in seven Wards of Myitkyina. There are over 700 Muslim devotees at these mosques, it is learnt.

The team rounded off their election campaign in Aung Nan Ward on January 1, in Kyun Pin Thar Ward on January 8, in Khay Mar Thiri on January 15 respectively. A Muslim community member from Min Yat Ward said that campaign in this ward today had to be cancelled.

Brig. Gen. Thein Zaw is running the ‘Setana Pyee Phyo’ and ‘Parami’ free clinics for people in 18 wards and villages in Myitkyina including Sitapu, Dukathaung, Naung Nan, Shwe Set, Sha Daung, a local resident said. (JEG's: will the clinics run free after elections???)

The Kachin State Progressive Party (KSPP) is also planning to contest the elections. They have already conducted election campaign in 18 townships in Kachin State.

According to government statistics, there are 46 million Buddhists, three million Christians, two million Muslims and three million Hindus in Burma.

Burma Newscasts - USDA woos Muslims in Kachin state ahead of elections -
Friday, 22 January 2010 21:36

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