For many elderly ethnic Chinese residents of Yangon, the anti-Chinese riots of 1967 are still a fresh wound. It is widely believed that the military government deliberately stoked the violence in an attempt to divert attention from the deteriorating economy. The anti-Chinese sentiment fomented by the regime continues to reverberate, and many of the ethnic Chinese in Yangon consider a vote for the ruling party, the brainchild of then-Senior General Than Shwe, unthinkable.
Organisations representing blind and disabled persons are insisting on equal voting rights, with those who have visual or hearing impairments able to cast a ballot in the November 8 poll the same way anyone else would.
The National League for Democracy is facing electoral challenges due to campaigning by nationalist Buddhist groups, but prominent monk U Wirathu insists there is no coordinated campaign against the party.
An overwhelming National League for Democracy win in the election that enables it to form government will kill off dictatorship, the party’s patron told supporters in Mandalay.
Outlawed for 24 years, exiles of the Democratic Party for a New Society have been allowed to return to Myanmar where the party has re-registered with the Union Election Commission and is set to take part in next month’s elections.
The Kachin Independence Organisation (KIO), one of the most powerful ethnic armed groups, has accused the Tatmadaw of stepping up its offensives to put pressure on the group to join a proposed nationwide ceasefire agreement with the government.
U Tin Oo, veteran patron of the National League for Democracy and head of its campaign committee, has met two prominent Ma Ba Tha monks in an apparent effort to defuse tensions with the nationalist association, which the party accuses of political interference.