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Burma/Myanmar's Legislature

  • Burma/Myanmar's Legislature - analysis and commentary

    Websites/Multiple Documents

    Title: "Political Monitor"
    Description/subject: Covers the hluttaw sessions as well as broader news....In addition to English, the site also carries news about Burma in French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Chinese and Russian. Arabic
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Euro-Burma Office
    Format/size: html
    Alternate URLs: http://euro-burma.eu/index.html
    Date of entry/update: 02 February 2012


    Title: MYANMAR Pyithu Hluttaw (House of Representatives)
    Description/subject: General information; Electoral system; Last elections; Election archive; Full text.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Inter-Parliamentary Union
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 27 March 2012


    Title: PARLIAMENT WATCH
    Description/subject: PEOPLE’S ASSEMBLY * Overview * Sessions - 1st Session (Jan-Mar 2011) - 2nd Session (Aug-Nov 2011) - 3rd Session (Jan-May 2012) o Bills o MPs o Committees NATIONAL ASSEMBLY o Overview o Sessions - 1st Session (Jan-Mar 2011) - 2nd Session (Aug-Nov 2011) - 3d Session (Jan-May 2012) o Bills o MPs o Committees NATIONAL PARLIAMENT o Overview o Sessions - 1st Session (Jan-Mar 2011) - 2nd Session (Aug-Nov 2011) - 3rd Session (Jan-Apr 2012) o Bills o Committees DIVISION AND STATE PARLIAMENTS o Overview o Sessions - 1st Session (Jan-Mar 2011) - 1st Special Session (Jun-Jul 2011) - 2nd Session (Oct-Nov 2011) - 3rd Session (Feb-Mar 2012) - 3rd Special Session (Mar-Apr 2012) o Committees 2012 BY-ELECTIONS o By-elections special BACKGROUND o Political parties RELATED REPORTS Burma’s Parliament - A tool for institutionalized oppression 100 Days of Burmas Parliament - Strengthening the Status Quo Issues & Concerns Vol. 7 - Locked in, tied up: Burma’s disciplined democracy
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: ALTSEAN-Burma
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 09 June 2012


    Title: REGIME WATCH
    Description/subject: LEGISLATIVE has moved to "PARLIAMENT WATCH" athttp://www.altsean.org/Research/Regime%20Watch/Home.php .... EXECUTIVE:- President; Advisory Board; Vice-Presidents; National Defense and Security Council; Cabinet; Financial Commission; Division and State Administrations... Military: Tatmadaw Regional Commanders..... JUDICIAL: Supreme Court; Constitutional Tribunal; Election Commission... Anatomy of the regime..... RELATED REPORTS: Issues & Concerns Vol. 7 - Locked in, tied up: Burma’s disciplined democracy; 100 Days of Burmas Parliament - Strengthening the Status Quo; Thein Sein's first 100 days: Words not matched by actions.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: ALTSEAN-Burma
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 12 July 2011


    Title: See also the 7th step of the 7-Step Roadmap
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Online Burma/Myanmar Library
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 28 November 2011


    Title: The Pyidaungsu Hluttaw
    Description/subject: The Pyidaungsu Hluttaw (Burmese: ပြည်ထောင်စု လွှတ်တော်, pronounced [pjìdàuɴzu̯ l̥ʊʔtɔ̀]; Assembly of the Union) is the national-level bicameral legislature of Myanmar (officially known as the Republic of the Union of Myanmar) established by the 2008 National Constitution. The Pyidaungsu Hluttaw is made up of two houses, the Amyotha Hluttaw (အမျိုးသားလွှတ်တော်; House of Nationalities), a 224-seat upper house as well as the Pyithu Hluttaw, a 440-seat lower house (ပြည်သူ့လွှတ်တော်; House of Representatives). Each of the fourteen major administrative regions and states has its own local Hluttaw--Region Hluttaw (တိုင်းဒေသကြီးလွှတ်တော်; Region Assembly) or State Hluttaw (ပြည်နယ်လွှတ်တော်; State Assembly). The Pyidaungsu Hluttaw is housed in a 31-building complex, which is believed to represent the 31 planes of existence in Buddhist cosmology, located in Zeya Theddhi Ward of Naypyidaw.[1] Members of the first Pyidaungsu Hluttaw were elected in the Burmese general election on 7 November 2010.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Wikipedia
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 29 November 2011


    Individual Documents

    Title: Not a Rubber Stamp: Myanmar’s Legislature in a Time of Transition
    Date of publication: 13 December 2013
    Description/subject: OVERVIEW: "Myanmar’s new legislature, the Union Assembly formed in 2011 on the basis of elections the previous year, has turned out to be far more vibrant and influential than expected. Both its lower and upper houses have a key role in driving the transition process through the enactment and amendment of legislation needed to reform the outdated legal code and are acting as a real check on the power of the executive. Yet, some bills moving through the legislature have raised concerns that the authorities, both legislative and executive, may not be ready to give up authoritarian controls on the media, on civil society organisations and on the right to demonstrate. More broadly, the role of the 25 per cent military bloc and its impact on the legislature have been questioned. Serious individual and institutional capacity constraints and unclear procedures serve as a brake on effective, efficient lawmaking. Several controversial pieces of legislation are being developed. The association bill under consideration would provide a framework for the registration and operation of social organisations and international non-governmental organisations (NGOs). Initial drafts were considered by local organisations and international experts to be highly restrictive and far short of global best practice. At the same time, there has been legislative willingness to consult with those local groups and listen to expert advice. The latest version is far less restrictive and addresses the majority of civil society concerns. The law on peaceful assembly promulgated in 2011 has been widely criticised for imposing criminal penalties on those who demonstrate without permission. Scores of activists have been charged and dozens imprisoned under it, raising serious questions about the true extent of Myanmar’s new freedoms. Senior lawmakers have acknowledged that such imprisonment is inconsistent with the president’s pledge that there will be no more political prisoners by the end of the year. A proposal to amend the problematic provisions has been drawn up. New media legislation to replace the old draconian restrictions is being debated. Again, some problematic provisions have been carried over into the draft bills, including the power to issue and revoke publishing licences and broadly-worded restrictions on content. There has been consultation with media representatives, including the press council, but so far it is not clear to what extent their concerns will be taken into account. The government has expressed some unease about having an unregulated media when many journalists still do not well understand professional and ethical standards. What emerges is a picture of a lawmaking process with flaws but in general willing to consult with stakeholders and make use of expert inputs. Authoritarian reflexes and concerns in some quarters about opening up too far, too fast are now tempered, though not erased, by other considerations, such as public demands for consultation and a desire to meet international standards. The shape of media legislation and whether the announced amendments are made to the peaceful assembly law will be the next concrete tests of whether it is the old reflexes that hold sway or the new openness. The 25 per cent of seats reserved for the military under the constitution has been a source of concern to many. While the reservation is not consistent with fundamental democratic principles, the military bloc has generally taken positions supportive of the reform process. There have been some tensions with other lawmakers, as the bloc has sometimes voted in support of the executive and the president and against the majority Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP), established by the old military regime. More broadly, lawmaking is constrained by representatives’ lack of experience and institutional weaknesses in what is the first independent legislature in Myanmar for 50 years. Lawmakers have little knowledge of democratic practice, and there is very little institutional support. Without offices or staff, with no policy and research help, and with committees lacking internal experts to report on and analyse the issues, efficient, effective lawmaking is impossible. Under such circumstances, and with a crowded legislative agenda, it is impressive how much has been achieved. But as the transition proceeds, far greater investments are needed if this critical branch of government is to meet public expectations".
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Crisis Group (ICG) Asia Report N°142
    Format/size: pdf (286K-reduced version; 2.58MB-original)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.crisisgroup.org/en/regions/asia/south-east-asia/myanmar/b142-not-a-rubber-stamp-myanmar-...
    Date of entry/update: 13 December 2013


    Title: BURMA’S PARLIAMENT: FUNDAMENTAL REFORMS STILL BLOCKED
    Date of publication: 21 September 2012
    Description/subject: 1..No progress on the repeal of oppressive laws 2..Important proposals rejected 3..Parliament accepts new VP with eyes closed, boosts presidential powers 3..Local Parliaments shut 3..Military MPs inactive 4..Regime lies in Parliament 4..MPs wrangle over Foreign Investment Law 4..Green light to land confiscation commission, improved legislation 5..NLD makes parliamentary debut 6..Recap of parliamentary sessions 6..List of new laws
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: ALTSEAN-Burma
    Format/size: pdf (99K)
    Date of entry/update: 24 September 2012


    Title: BURMA’S PARLIAMENT: A TOOL FOR INSTITUTIONALIZED OPPRESSION
    Date of publication: 28 November 2011
    Description/subject: • Despite the regime’s claim that an elected legislature was a crucial step towards the emergence of its “discipline-flourishing democracy,” the Parliament is turning out to be the regime’s key tool for institutionalizing oppression. • The pro-regime Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP)-dominated Parliament refuses to repeal the draconian laws that provided the basis for the imprisonment of several thousand political prisoners in recent years. • The refusal makes the adoption of the much-publicized “Labor Organizations Law” and “Peaceful Gathering and Demonstration Law” irrelevant as the regime is still able to invoke the blanket “security” provisions of draconian laws. • The Parliament’s second session repeats the sham parliamentary debates witnessed during the January- March first session. Important issues, such as national reconciliation and the ongoing conflict in ethnic areas are only marginally discussed. • During question time, regime ministers and officials go to great lengths to categorically deny human rights abuses and to justify repressive measures. • Ruling party and military MPs oppose the adoption of important proposals on the release of political prisoners and the improvement of detention conditions in jails across the country. Instead, they introduce new restrictive laws designed to limit political participation. • Debate and approval of the national budget remain off-limits to MPs because State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) Chairman Sr Gen Than Shwe approved the budget for the 2011-2012 financial year before Parliament convened on 31 January. • The laws that govern parliamentary proceedings, enacted by Than Shwe in October 2010, continue to severely restrict parliamentary debate and participation. • Censorship and lack of access continue to characterize the media environment during the Parliament’s second session. • Despite the regime’s claim that local Parliaments would provide some degree of legislative decentralization, most of the Division and State Parliaments fail to introduce or debate any legislation. • In a bogus attempt to show its commitment to reach a ceasefire with ethnic armed groups, the regime forms two parliamentary ‘peace-making’ committees. However, the committees fail to adopt any initiatives aimed at facilitating peace talks.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: ALTSEAN-Burma
    Format/size: pdf (152K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.altsean.org/Docs/PDF%20Format/Thematic%20Briefers/Burmas%20Parliament%20-%20A%20tool%20f...
    Date of entry/update: 28 November 2011


    Title: An Independent Analysis of the Principal Elements of the 2008 Constitution
    Date of publication: 2009
    Description/subject: Reproduced, with the author’s permission, from “The State in Myanmar” by Robert H Taylor published in 2009 by Hurst & Company, London..."The 2008 constitution contains a number of points that attempt to address issues that had grown out of the state in Myanmar’s post-colonial history. Among these, most prominently and controversially, in addition to the power and autonomy of the armed forces under the constitution, and the complex issue of political autonomy for ethnicallydesignated groups, was the distribution of power between the executive, legislature and judiciary at various levels of government. The constitution is the army government’s attempt to cast these issues in terms that will be politically resolvable and will avoid in the future both the severe conflicts of the civil war and the popular upheaval of 1988. Whether the constitution proves to be more durable and adaptable than its two predecessors, of course, is a question that future historians will answer..."
    Author/creator: Robert Taylor
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Network Myanmar
    Format/size: pdf (124K)
    Date of entry/update: 10 March 2010


    Title: Amyotha Hluttaw
    Description/subject: The Amyotha Hluttaw (Burmese: အမျိုးသားလွှတ်တော်, IPA: [ʔəmjóðá l̥ʊʔtɔ̀]; House of Nationalities) is the upper house of the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw, the bicameral legislature of Burma (Myanmar). It consists of 224 member of which 168 are directly elected and 56 appointed by the Myanmar Armed Forces. The last elections to the Amyotha Hluttaw were held in November 2010. At its first meeting on 31 January 2011, Khin Aung Myint was elected Speaker of the Amyotha Hluttaw and Chairman of the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw as a whole.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Wikipedia
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 29 November 2011


    Title: Pyithu Hluttaw
    Description/subject: The Pyithu Hluttaw (Burmese: ပြည်သူ့ လွှတ်တော်, pronounced [pjìðṵ l̥ʊʔtɔ̀]; House of Representatives) is the lower house of the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw, the bicameral legislature of Burma (Myanmar). It consists of 440 members of which 330 are directly elected and 110 appointed by the Myanmar Armed Forces. The last elections to the Pyithu Hluttaw were held in November 2010. At its first meeting on 31 January 2011, Thura Shwe Mann was elected Speaker of the Pyithu Hluttaw.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Wikipedia
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 29 November 2011


  • Hluttaw websites

    Websites/Multiple Documents

    Title: Pyithu Hluttaw - ျပည္သူ႔လႊတ္ေတာ္
    Description/subject: News, Meetings (not updated), Representatives, Committees and Commissions, Law affairs (not updated), Videos (not updated), Photos..... အဖြင့္, သတင္းႏွင့္ ျပန္ၾကားေရး၊ အစည္းအေဝးမ်ား (မတင္ရေသး)၊ ကိုယ္စားလွယ္ မ်ား၊ ေကာ္မတီ/ေကာ္မရွင္မ်ား၊ ဥပေဒဆိုင္ရာမ်ား (မတင္ရေသး)၊ ဗီဒီယိုမ်ား (မတင္ရေသး)၊ ဓါတ္ပံုမ်ား
    Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
    Source/publisher: Pyithu Hluttaw
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 04 September 2012