Suu Kyi wants word changed in oath


Yangon : Myanmar’s pro-democracy campaigner Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) Thursday asked the government to change a word in the oath of office taken by new parliamentarians — opting for the word “respect” (the constitution) instead of “safeguard”.

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The NLD had won 43 of the 44 seats in the April 1 parliamentary by-elections. Winners are scheduled to take their oath of office in parliament Monday.

Members of parliament are required to pledge to “safeguard” the constitution while taking oath of office. The NLD wants the word changed to “respect” through an amendment.

Top functionary of the NLD, Nyan Win Thursday consulted with government representatives in Naypyitaw to reach a compromise. No details of the meeting were disclosed.

However, a major hurdle appears to be on how to effect change in time for the new members, the Mizzima News reported.

The current Lower House of parliament is due to reconvene Monday. One possible solution may be to resume the parliament without swearing in NLD members.

In an address on Radio Free Asia Thursday, Suu Kyi said she did not think that it was a serious obstacle to her party.

“We don’t mean we will not attend the parliament, we mean we will attend only after taking the oath,” she said. “Changing that wording in the oath is also in conformity with the constitution. I don’t expect there will be any difficulty in doing it.”

However, some lawmakers see a potential problem, perhaps requiring a vote by parliament.