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Burma dismantling election offices

BBC Summary of World Broadcasts
August 26, 2000, Saturday

Burma dismantling election offices after Democracy League branches close

Source: Democratic Voice of Burma, Oslo, in Burmese 1430 gmt 23 Aug 00

Text of report by Burmese opposition radio on 23rd August

The SPDC [State Peace and Development Council] is reported to be dismantling
ward and township-level NLD [National League for Democracy] offices as well as
election subcommissions in townships which no longer have NLD branch offices.

DVB correspondent Myint Maung Maung sent the following dispatch.

An election office is the office which endorses the letters of resignation 
of NLD
members and petitions of no support for the NLD collected at rallies held 
in various
townships. These offices have to declare closure of NLD offices after the 
NLD offices
and signboards have been forcefully dismantled by SPDC lackeys. These township
election offices accept and endorse resignation letters of NLD members who 
been threatened and intimidated by authorities to resign. The SPDC forced the
people to sign petitions declaring no support for NLD and hold mass rallies 
to demand
dissolution of NLD. The people were enticed with free rice, cooking oil, 
sugar, and
soap to attend these rallies. It is learned that election offices in 
townships, where NLD
branches have been dismantled, are no longer said to have their function.

It has been learned that the ongoing attempts to hold these mass rallies have
been met with embarrassment. At a recent rally held in Kawthaung, the 
chairman asked whether the people support the motion calling for disbanding 
of NLD
and there was no response from the audience. Because of this incident, a rally
scheduled to be held in Mergui to call for dissolution of the NLD has been 
called off.