Election commission rejects NLD complaint on unfair campaigning

YANGON — The Union Election Commission on Friday rejected a complaint by the main opposition party that President U Thein Sein was breaking election rules by travelling throughout the country ahead of Sunday’s polls.

The National League for Democracy’s central executive committee on Thursday sent a list of complaints to the UEC about alleged breaches of election rules, including the frequent trips by President U Thein Sein to rural areas.

“The President’s trips are not for campaigning,” the UEC said in a statement. “The President is just going to these place to discuss development, and people come out to greet him out of their own desire.”

Earlier Friday the UEC issued a statement accusing a “big party” of creating errors in voting lists.

“Voters’ registration cards were issued based on voters’ lists. Since some of the voters’ names were repeated in the lists, it was reported that voter’s registration cards are being duplicated,” UEC said.

The reference of an unnamed “big party,” followed the complaints sent to the UEC by the NLD the previous day.

Besides complaining about the President’s trips to rural areas during the election campaign, the NLD also requested that the UEC resolve the issue of the “duplication of voters’ registration cards.”

Some 33.5 million people will be eligible to vote in Sunday’s polls, at more than 40,000 balloting stations nationwide. This year’s election for 664 seats in the Lower and Upper parliaments and 667 seats in State and Region assembles, has attracted some 10,000 observers.

The UEC has been criticized for muddled voting lists, failing to provide transparency for advance voting of civil servants, blocking observers from military bases and mishandling overseas balloting.  

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