YANGON — The incoming National League for Democracy has revealed its picks for 13 of the country’s 14 new chief ministers at state and regional assemblies across the country, all of whom are members of the party, which convincingly won last November’s general election but does not have a majority in three state parliaments.
Monday’s announcement of U Nyi Pu (Gwa-2) as the next Rakhine State chief minister prompted a walkout by angry Arakan National Party lawmakers in the Sittwe assembly, who had been lobbying the incoming Union government to appoint a member of their party as speaker. The ANP is the largest party in the Rakhine State Hluttaw but is short of a majority, while the NLD holds only eight of the chamber’s 47 seats.
ANP lawmakers arrived in the chamber on Monday morning wearing black stickers to protest the expected selection, leaving after the announcement was made. A protest was held in Sittwe last week at the failure of the NLD to promise the selection of an ANP chief minister.
In Shan State, where the NLD is the fourth largest bloc after military appointees, the USDP and the Shan Nationalities League for Democracy, the NLD’s Dr Lin Htut (Lashio-1) has been appointed to the top post.
The appointee for the Kachin State Hluttaw, where the NLD is one MP short of a majority, is expected to be announced tomorrow, with Dr Khat Aung (Myitkyina-1) tipped for the role.
Two female chief ministers are among the appointees, including Daw Nan Khin Htway Myint (Hpa-an-1) in Kayin State and and Dr Lei Lei Maw (Thayetchaung-1) in Tanintharyi Region, collectively the first two women appointed to a chief minister role in Myanmar.
Under the terms of the 2008 Constitution, the president has sole authority to appoint chief ministers of state and regional parliaments, who must be sitting members of the Hluttaw which they are to preside over.
Ethnic parties in the Union Parliament last year lobbied to introduce a constitutional reform proposal to allow the selection of chief ministers by state and regional assemblies, but the proposal was not considered alongside a number of other proposed charter amendments in June 2015.
The full list of appointees:
Ayeyarwady Region: Mahn Johnny (Kyonpaw-2)
Bago Region: U Win Thein (Yedashe-1)
Chin State: Salai Hlan Lwe (Falam-2)
Kachin State: Dr Khat Aung (Myitkyina-1) — expected to be announced on Tuesday
Kayah State: U L Phaung Shi (Mese-2)
Kayin State: Daw Nan Khin Htway Myint (Hpa-an-1)
Magway Region: Dr Aung Moe Nyo (Pwinbyu-1)
Mandalay Region: Dr Zaw Myint Maung (Amarapura-1)
Mon State: U Min Min Oo (Bilin-2)
Rakhine State: U Nyi Pu (Gwa-2)
Sagaing State: Dr Myint Naing Oo (Tamu-1)
Shan State: Dr Lin Htut (Lashio-1)
Tanintharyi Region: Dr Lei Lei Maw (Thayetchaung-1)
Yangon Region: U Phyo Min Thein (Hlegu-2)