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Chin parties prepare for election showdown

President Thein Sein joining in a Chin traditional dance in Hakha. (PHOTO: Chinland Post)

A senior representative of the Chin National Democratic Party (CNDP) said an increase in the number of ethnic-based political parties in Chin State will create tougher competition in the upcoming general election, though the party expected to win a majority of the regional seats.

Salai Nge Pi, secretary of the CNDP (formerly the Chin National Party or CNP), said the party is looking to contest 60 constituencies, including all nine townships in Chin State, as well as townships in Sagaing and Magwe divisions, and Arakan State.

“We expect tough competition in Chin State as several ethnic parties will be competing – for example, the Zomi National Congress Party will be fielding a leading candidate in Tonzang Township while the Chin League for Democracy will be eyeing Matupi and several other areas,” he said.

“But regardless of the competition, we will all be brothers in parliament.”

Salai Nge Pi said the CNDP is aiming to win 80 percent of the constituencies where it is competing, and considers the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party and opposition National League for Democracy as its main competitors.

In the 2010 general election, the party – then known as the CNP – contested 18 parliamentary seats and won nine.

Also slated to compete in in Chin State for the November elections are the Chin Progressive Party (CPP), Asho Chin National Party, Chin League for Democracy, and Khumi National Party.

Meanwhile, the Union Election Commission (UEC) on 15 July announced that two more political parties, the Arakan Patriot Party (APP) and the Women’s Party (Mon) have been approved for registration.

According to the UEC, a total of three ethnic-based Arakanese parties are registered: the Arakan National Party (formerly Rakhine Nationalities Development Party), the Rakhine State National United Party and the APP.

In Mon State, three local ethnic-based parties are registered to date: the All-Mon Region Democracy Party, the Mon National Party, and Women’s Party (Mon).

 

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