Suu Kyi’s party sworn into Myanmar’s new parliament

MPs from Suu Kyi’s National League of Democracy take their seats in Myanmar’s new parliament

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Myanmar's National League for Democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi arrives for the opening of the new parliament in capital Naypyitaw February 1, 2016

Myanmar’s new parliament dominated by Aung San Suu Kyi's pro-democracy National League of Democracy (NLD) took oath on Monday, after over 50 years of military rule.

The NLD won near 80 percent of seats in the November 8 election last year, defeating the military-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party.

Legislators from the two parties and smaller ethnic minority parties as well as nominated military representatives filed into the parliament for the oath taking session.

"Today is a day to be proud of in Myanmar's political history and for the democratic transition," Win Myint from NLD said in an acceptance speech.

The NLD-majority parliament will begin its term in April, after current President Thein Sein steps down.

Myanmar, has been ruled directly or indirectly by the military since it first took power in 1962.

Unelected soldiers will comprise 25 percent of the seats, owing to the junta-based constitution.

Under the 2008 constitution, Suu Kyi is barred from presidency, because her children are not Myanmar citizens.

She vowed to rule from behind the scenes through a proxy, but it’s not clear yet how she will do that.

Elected members of two chambers and the military will nominate three candidates. The new president will be chosen by two chambers, and the two candidates who couldn’t win will be vice presidents. 

The new government will take over a country blighted by civil wars and ethnic and religious divisions, while poverty rates are high and the country's bureaucracy is poorly funded and riven with corruption.

TRTWorld and agencies