Myanmar | Aung San Suu Kyi's Opposition Party Wins 2015 Landmark Election
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- Aung San Suu Kyi's Opposition Party Wins 2015 Landmark Election
Aung San Suu Kyi's Opposition Party Wins 2015 Landmark Election
In 2015, the date for the general election was set for Nov. 8. During the summer of 2015, Aung San Suu Kyi announced that her party, the National League for Democracy (NLD), would take part in the election after boycotting the previous one in 2010, which was condemned for irregularities by international organizations. The leader of NLD, the main opposition party, and Myanmar's most popular politician, Aung San Suu Kyi released a video in early September as campaigning began. In the video, she said, "For the first time in decades, our people will have a real chance of bringing about real change. This is a chance that we cannot afford to let slip. We hope that the whole world understands how important it is for us to have free and fair elections, and to make sure that the results of such elections are respected by all concerned. Please help us by observing what happens before the elections, during the elections, and, crucially, after the elections."
Her NLD party, widely expected to win, has won before, only to have the election outcome ignored. In the 1990 general election, NLD won in a landslide, taking 392 out of 492 seats. However, the military refused to cede power.
In August 2015, the country's electoral commission announced that candidates and political parties were forbidden from criticizing the military during their state media campaign speeches. Also, the 2015 election would still take place under a constitution that was written by the military, a constitution that many, including NLD view as fraudulent.
Aung San Suu Kyi, the leader of the main opposition party
Source: Khin Maung Win for ASSOCIATED PRESS
Early results indicated that Aung San Suu Kyi's opposition party won Myanmar's landmark national elections by a landslide. The first official results had the opposition party winning the majority of seats in Yangon, Myanmar's largest city. The country's ruling military-backed party conceded the election. If the results are honored by the military and ruling party, it would be the first time in over fifty years that Myanmar voters were able to freely pick their leaders through an election.