THE CONSTITUTION

 

OF THE BURMA SOCIALIST PROGRAMME PARTY

 

 

FOR THE TRANSITIONAL PERIOD OF ITS CONSTRUCTION

 

 

ADOPTED BY THE REVOLUTIONARY COUNCIL

 

JULY 4, 1962

 

 

 

CONTENTS

 

 

Origin and Purpose.

 

CHAPTER 1

Party Organisation

 

CHAPTER II

Admission into and Membership of the Party

 

CHAPTER III

Code of Discipline for Party Members

 

CHAPTER IV

Rights

 

CHAPTER V

Resolves and Duties of the Party and Individual Members

 

CHAPTER VI

Amendment of the Constitution and Rule-making

 

APPENDIX A.-- Organisational Structure of the transitional Cadre Party.

APPENDIX B. -- Roughcast of Future National Party.

 

 

 

THE   BURMA  SOCIALIST   PROGRAMME   PARTY

 

Origin and Purpose

 

1.       The. Revolutionary Council of the Union of Burma, having rescued the Union, not a moment too soon, from utter disintegration,   now strives to  reconstruct the social and economic life of all citizens by the Burmese Way to Socialism.

 

2.       The Revolutionary Council, forged  by  peculiar and powerful   historical forces  is  revolutionary in essence,  but wears the outward garb of a military council. This the Revolutionary Council deems undesirable. The Revolutionary Council believes that the natural leader of a revolution should be a revolutionary political party.

 

3.       The Revolutionary Council has therefore decided to build a transitional political party to carry the leadership in Burma's future politics. The Burma Socialist Programme Party is accordingly launched under the appended Constitution.

 

 

Organisational Structure of the Cadre Party (Appendix A)

 

4. The organisational structure of this transitional Party is that of a Cadre Party, meaning a party which performs such basic party functions as recruiting nucleus personnel called cadres, and training and testing them by assigning duties, etc.

 

The Cadre Party is constituted on the principle of centralism. It will however convene Party conferences as and when required.

 

The Party will grow by recruitments of Party cadres on functional and geographical basis.

 

 

Organisational Structure of the future National Party (Appendix B)

 

5. When the party constructional work is done and the Cadre Party blossoms into the Party of the entire nation,

 

(a) the leading committees of the Party of all levels shall be elected by popular vote;

 

(b) lower committees and all Party members shall abide by the directions and decisions of the Central Committee and higher committees that are elected by popular vote;

 

(c)      the  minority shall abide  by the decisions of the majority; and

 

(d)      there shall be a reciprocal and regular flow of reports between higher and lower Party organisations.

 

When the national Party has thus been constituted it shall operate on the principle of democratic centralism.

 

The Revolutionary Council envisages the reorganisation of the Party in the future on the principle of democratic centralism. On such reorganisation a new constitution shall be framed on the principle of democratic centralism.

 

The Revolutionary Council reiterates its firm resolve to strive with patience and industry to build a vanguard party which earns the confidence of the entire nation.

 

 

 

THE PARTY IN THE TRANSITIONAL PERIOD OF ITS CONSTRUCTION

 

 

CHAPTER I

 

PARTY ORGANISATION

 

 

SECTION I

 

The Name of the Party

 

The  Party  shall   be  called   "THE   BURMA  SOCIALIST PROGRAMME PARTY".

 

 

SECTION 2

 

The Supreme Authority of the Party

 

The Revolutionary Council shall be the supreme authority of the Party during the transitional period of its construction.

 

 

SECTION 3

 

Committees of top echelon

 

(a)      The Revolutionary Council shall appoint three committees of equal status as follows : -

 

(i)     the Party Central Organising Committee,

(ii)    the Party Discipline Committee,

(iii)    the Socialist Economy Planning Committee.

 

(b)      The Revolutionary Council shall appoint a chairman for each of these Committees.

 

(c)      The Revolutionary Council shall appoint on the Central Organising Committee only members of the Revolutionary Council.

 

(d)      The Revolutionary Council shall appoint on the Party Discipline Committee only members of the   Revolutionary Council.

 

(e)      The   Revolutionary   Council   shall   appoint   on   the Socialist Economy Planning Committee either members of the Revolutionary Council only or members of the Revolutionary Council and other suitable persons also.

 

 

 

SECTION 4

 

Headquarters of the Central Organising Committee

 

(a) The Central Organising Committee shall establish a headquarters to perform their tasks, and it shall consist of the following five departments : -

 

(i)       the Central Department for Peasants Affairs.

 

(ii)      the Central Department for Workers Affairs,

 

(iii)      the Central Department for Mass Organisation Affairs,

 

(iv)      the Central Department for Administrative Affairs.

 

(v)      the Central Department for Educational Affairs.

 

These Central Departments shall appoint, as necessity may arise, committees (or branches) under their control.

 

(b) The Central Organising Committee shall appoint, as necessary, with the approval of the Revolutionary Council, executives of the Central Organising Committee Headquarters and assign their duties.

 

 

 

SECTION 5

 

Party Units

 

(a)      The Central  Organising Committee shall  establish, in exercise of the powers conferred on it  by  the Revolutionary Council, Party Units (Primary Party Organisations) having direct relations with the Central Organising Committee, on the basis of constituencies and branches of production, and where circumstances and conditions require on the basis of townships and hill tracts.

 

(b)     The Executive Committee of a Party Unit shall   be constituted as follows:-

 

(i)      President (supervisory control),

 

(ii)     Secretary (general),

 

(iii)    Member in charge of Peasants Affairs,

 

(iv)    Member in charge of Workers Affairs, and

 

(v)     Committee Members (to be appointed as many as are required and assigned duties).

 

(c)    The Executive Committee of a Party Unit shall be responsible for the control and administration of that Party Unit.

 

 

SECTION 6

 

Committees and Party Groups

 

(a)      Party Units may appoint their own Committees and Party  Groups as  required organisationally  in the villages, wards, roads and streets, mills and factories, etc., within their respective jurisdictions. Party Units shall be responsible for the control and administration of their respective Committees and Party Groups.

 

(b)      The Rules Drafting Body referred to in Section 20 of Chapter VI shall make rules for the Work Tables of the Committees and Party Groups which are subordinate to Party Units.

 

 

SECTION 7

 

Divisional Supervision Committees

 

(a) The Revolutionary Council of the Union of Burma shall  directly appoint  Divisional   Supervision   Committees to supervise, direct, co-ordinate and inspect the activities of Party Units that have direct relations with the Central Organising Committee, and to carry out such special duties as are assigned from time to time by the Revolutionary Council of the Union of Burma and the Central Organising Committee.

 

(b)      The Divisional Supervision Committees shall appoint their own office staff with the approval of the Central Organising Committee.

 

(c)      The Divisional Supervision Committees shall  submit reports on their work to the Central Organising Committee.

 

 

 

SECTION 8

 

The Party Discipline Committee

 

The Revolutionary Council of the Union of Burma shall prescribe separately the functions and the organisational structure of the Party Discipline Committee.

 

 

 

SECTION 9

 

The Socialist Economy Planning Committee

 

The Revolutionary Council of the Union of Burma shall prescribe separately the functions and the organisational structure of the Socialist Economy Planning Committee.

 

 

 

SECTION 10

 

Council of Ministers

 

The Chairman of the Revolutionary Council of the Union of Burma shall form the Council of Ministers of the Revolutionary Government either with members of the Revolutionary Council only, or with members of the Revolutionary Council and other suitable persons in combination, after obtaining the approval of the Revolutionary Council.

 

 

 

SECTION 11

 

The Party and the Government

 

The Revolutionary Council of the Union of Burma shall ensure that there is close and appropriate co-operation between the Central Organising Committee and the Council of Ministers of the Revolutionary Government of the Union of Burma for effective implementation of programmes relating to peasants and workers, for educating the people in Socialist Democracy, for implementing the Socialist Economy Plan and for carrying out other needed tasks.

 

 

 

CHAPTER II

 

ADMISSION INTO AND MEMBERSHIP OF THE PARTY

 

SECTION  12

 

Admission into the Party

 

 

(a) Required Qualifications. -- An applicant seeking admission into the Party must:

 

(i)    be a citizen of the Union of Burma;

 

(ii)    have attained the age of 18 years;

 

(iii) accept out of conviction the Burmese Way to Socialism as prescribed by the Revolutionary Council of the Union of Burma and abide by the Constitution of the Party;

 

(iv) be resolved to carry out unswervingly the tasks assigned to him by the Party; and

 

(v) be prepared to submit to the scrutiny of the Party Discipline Committee appointed by the Revolutionary Council of the Union of Burma.

 

(b)      Submission of applications. --  A candidate for member ship having those qualifications stated in Section 12 (a) above, shall submit his or her application in prescribed form, endorsed by at least two Party members, to the Central Organising Committee either directly or through  the  Party  Unit concerned.

 

(c)      Candidate Members. -- The Central Organising Committee shall transmit the applications for candidate member-ship to the Revolutionary Council on whose concurrence the applicant shall be admitted as a candidate member in the Party Unit concerned.

 

(d) Tenure of Candidate Membership. -- Candidate members shall pass through a probationary period of two years studying the duties responsibilities and the role of the Party and performing tasks assigned to them.

 

 

 

SECTION  13

 

Full-fledged Membership of the Party

 

A candidate member who has not committed any offence throughout his or her term of candidature is eligible for promotion to a full-fledged membership on completion of the term of his or her probation. For such promotion the Party Unit concerned shall submit a recommendation in respect of a candidate member under its control, commenting in detail on his or her loyalty to the Country and the Party, moral character and potentialities, to the Revolutionary Council through the Central Organising Committee. The Revolutionary Council shall be the deciding authority.

 

Proviso: The Revolutionary Council shall however have the competence to recognise any suitable person as candidate member or a full-fledged member.

 

 

 

SECTION  14

 

Length of Service of  a Party  Member,   Promotion, Resignation from the Party

 

(a)  Length of Service of a Party member. -- The length of service of  a Party member shall be reckoned from the date of commencement of his or her candidature.

 

(b)  Promotion. -- A Party  member shall   be eligible   for promotion to a higher office only after he or she has served for at least two years as a full-fledged member.

 

Proviso: The Revolutionary Council shall however have the competence to promote any deserving person before the lapse of the prescribed period, by virtue of his or her loyalty to the Country and the Party and of his or her moral character and potentialities.

 

(c)  Resignation   from   the  Party. -- A candidate   member wishing to resign his or  her   membership   may  do  so   by application to the Central Organising Committee. But once full-fledged membership has been attained no Party member shall have the right to resign from the Party.

 

 

 

CHAPTER III

 

CODE OF DISCIPLINE FOR PARTY MEMBERS

 

(In  Section   15  which follows the term "Party member"  includes candidate member as well as full-fledged Party member.)

 

 

SECTION  I5

 

Code of Discipline

 

(a) Every Party member shall strictly  abide by the Code of discipline prescribed below:-

 

(i) A Party member shall not owe allegiance of any form or extent to any other country. Nor shall he or she subject himself or herself to any auspices or influence of any other country. He or she shall acknowledge allegiance only to the Union of Burma.

 

(ii) A Party member shall in all his or her activities avoid any manifestation of factionalism, group or individual leadership, and work with fidelity to the principle of collective leadership.

 

(iii) A Party member shall observe the principles, policy, programme, discipline, etc., formulated by the Party, and shall accept the decision of the Party for any infringement thereof.

 

(iv) A Party member shall not have income other than that earned legitimately by his or her own labour.

 

(v) A Party member shall not give or receive gifts to further his or her own personal interest.

 

(vi) A Party member who receives gifts under particular circumstances, shall account for and turn them over to the Party.

 

(vii) A Party member shall refrain from any behaviour or act that will lower him or her in the esteem of the people.

 

(viii) A Party member, engaged in any Party work of a confidential nature, shall not divulge any information of the work to anybody outside of those who are participating for its successful performance.

 

(ix)   A Party member shall protect  Party secrets with vigilance and also ensure that other members do likewise.

 

(x)   No  Party  member shall disclose any   Intra-party discussions outside the Party.

 

(xi) A Party member, even if he or she may disagree with any decision of the Party, shall nevertheless discharge his or her duty fully in the execution of the decision if so assigned by the Party.

 

(xii) A Party member shall act only in accordance within the powers conferred upon and duties assigned to him or her by the Party. If a Party member wishes to act beyond his or her powers and duties, he or she shall submit his or her wish to a competent authority, and only with the permission of that authority shall he or she act.

 

Proviso: In an emergency which allows no time for submitting the case to a competent authority but demands immediate action, Party members may act on their own initiative, but not prejudicial to the principles, policy, programme, discipline, etc., laid down by the Party. A full report of such a case shall be submitted to the authority concerned as soon as possible.

 

(xiii) Party members may criticise each other's shortcomings only inside the Party and in the presence of the members concerned. When any allegation is made against any Party member that member shall have the right to reply. If the allegation is proved false and to have been made with evil motives, action shall be taken against the member who made the allegation.

 

(xiv)   A   Party   member   shall   report  to  the   authority concerned truthfully and in time about the wants and needs, attitudes and opinions, aspirations and expectations, and grievances of the people.

 

(xv) A Party member shall avoid all acts which may be injurious to the aims and tasks of the Party and its solidarity and unity.

 

(b)   The Revolutionary Council has the competence to amend or add to this Code of Discipline.

 

 

CHAPTER   IV

 

RIGHTS

 

SECTION 16

 

Rights of Candidate Members

 

 

Candidate members have the following rights:-

 

(a)      to freedom of conscience and religion ;

 

(b)      to discuss at meetings of the Party Unit concerned, openly, politely and in an accommodating spirit the practical  problems arising out of assignments for which he or she is responsible ;

 

(c)      to submit to the Party Unit concerned suggestions that may contribute towards successful  prosecution of his or her assignments;

 

(d)    to attend in person the meeting at which the Party censures or commends him or her.

 

 

 

SECTION 17

 

Rights of Party Members

 

 

Party Members have the following rights:-

 

(a)      to freedom of conscience and religion ;

 

(b)      to discuss at meetings of the Party Unit concerned openly, politely and in an accommodating spirit the practical problems arising out of his or her Party Unit's assignments;

 

(c)      to submit, in the interest of successful performance of Party tasks, his or her critical appraisals made on the basis of principles not prejudicial to the Burmese Way  to Socialism  as adopted by the Revolutionary Council of the Union of Burma, and also his or her practical suggestions and proposals to the Central Organising   Committee   through   the   Party   Unit concerned ;

 

(d)      to appeal in writing to the Party Unit concerned on matters relating to his or her   grievances or com plaints. He or she has the right to send copies of his or her appeal right up to the Revolutionary Council through the Central Organising Committee. Should the Party Unit concerned fail to take action, he or she has the right to address his or her appeal directly to the Revolutionary Council through the Central Organising Committee. Copies of this appeal shall be sent to the Party Unit concerned ;

 

(e)      to attend in person the meeting at which the Party censures or commends in respect of him or her ;

 

(f)       to  elect or be  elected   according   to   Intra-party democracy at the time when   the   present   Cadre Party has transformed itself into the Party of the entire nation and is constituted on the principle of democratic  centralism.   (This   right   shall   not   be exercised during the transitional period of Party construction)

 

 

 

CHAPTER V

 

RESOLVES AND DUTIES OF THE PARTY AND INDIVIDUAL MEMBERS

 

SECTION 18

 

The Party

 

The Party as a whole is pledged to carry out the resolutions and duties stated below:-

 

(a)      With the Burmese Way to Socialism adopted by the Revolutionary Council of the Union of Burma as its own guide to action, the Party will strive towards the establishment of a Socialist Economy.

 

(b)      The Party will rally to its fold the entire mass of peasants, workers, intelligentsia who have public welfare at heart and those who earn their living in vocations which do not exploit the labour of others.

 

(c)      The Party believes that its own  interests and the people's coincide; should they conflict, however, at any time those of the nation and the Union of Burma shall prevail.

 

(d)      The Party shall always be mindful of preventing members of the party from turning into a privileged class at the expense of the people.

 

(e)      The Party will always be concerned with and interested in the aspirations and sufferings of the people and their plight.

 

(f)       In accordance with the slogan "From the people to the people", the Party, while taking lessons from the life experiences of the people, will also raise their intellectual level with all patience. This shall be the basic working style of the Party.

 

(g)      The Party shall so organise the masses of the people that they eventually come to have faith in the Party's programme and decisions and  of their own  will implement them with heart and soul.

 

(h) The Party will strive towards developing the present Defence Services of the Union of Burma into a national armed force imbued with socialist patriotism and inspired to defend the Socialist Economy and the Socialist State.

 

(i) The Party will always be vigilant to safeguard and uphold the sovereignty of the Union of Burma and to repulse any peril that may threaten the people from within the country or abroad.

 

 

SECTION 19

 

Individual Members

 

Every candidate  member and every Party  member as individuals shall carry out the following duties:-

 

(a)  To acquire socio-economic knowledge and experiences of Socialist Economy.

 

(b)  To make constant efforts to improve one's own general knowledge and raise one's own intellectual level.

 

(c)  To be always mindful of having to strictly abide by the Party Code of Discipline.

 

(d)  To try to improve one's skill in one's own work.

 

(e)  To set an example in maintaining the moral norms of leadership, in carrying out one's duties and in one's own personal life and relations with others.

 

(f)   To cultivate the habit of self-criticism to correct one's own shortcomings and mistakes. To help in a spirit of comradeship and with patience in correcting the shortcomings and mistakes of one's comrades.

 

(g)  To strive towards a level of maturity where one sincerely and honestly sees things as they really are, with true objectivity, and to think accordingly.

 

 

 

CHAPTER VI

 

AMENDMENT OF THE CONSTITUTION AND RULE-MAKING

 

SECTION 20

 

Rule-making Authority

 

The two committees, the Central Organising Committee and the Party Discipline Committee, as a joint body, have the authority to make, amend and prescribe the necessary Rules under the Party Constitution as and when required.

 

 

SECTION 21

 

Authority for  amending the  Constitution

 

The Revolutionary Council of the Union of Burma has the authority to make, amend and prescribe the Party Constitution as and when required.