News / Asia

Burmese Focus on Aung San Suu Kyi's Campaign Trail

Pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi receives flowers from supporters on her vehicle during her election campaign trip to Thone-Gwa township in Rangoon, Burma, February 26, 2012.
Pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi receives flowers from supporters on her vehicle during her election campaign trip to Thone-Gwa township in Rangoon, Burma, February 26, 2012.
Danielle Bernstein

As the campaign for Burma’s by-election heats up, the party of Nobel Peace Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi is the dominant face of the political opposition.

Crowds of adoring supporters have been gathering across the country at campaign rallies to catch a glimpse of Aung San Suu Kyi.

Although she draws the most interest, other candidates in her National League for Democracy party, such as AIDS activist Phyu Phyu Thin, are getting a taste of the attention.

The rally song says Aung San Suu Kyi's party has come back to serve the people and Phyu Phyu Thin will do the same.

The NLD was conspicuously absent from the ballots and campaign trails during the 2010 election and its return has brought palpable elation during lively street rallies.

Daw Kyi Kyi Win, is one rally-goer who has adorned her face and clothes with stickers. As she waved flags bearing the NLD’s fighting peacock emblem, she said she is even considering becoming an NLD member herself - a decision that would have been considered extremely risky just one year ago.

She says she thinks Aung San Suu Kyi can win, by a big margin and that makes her happy. She says she never thought that such political openness was possible.

Not everyone is elated at Aung San Suu Kyi’s return. There are other opposition parties who lack the star-power and the funding of the NLD.

Tae Yi, is the man faced with the unenviable task of running against Suu Kyi in Kawhmu. He pursued a legal case questioning the legitimacy of her candidacy, until a ruling this week rejected his challenge and placed her on the ballot.

He says he has no personal grudge against Aung San Suu Kyi and that he's glad to be running against her.

The 80 year-old candidate says his platform includes addressing democracy and human rights issues. Despite the court rulings against his challenge to Suu Kyi, his Unity and Peace Party says it is still challenging her legitimacy.

The incumbent politician in the Kawhmu township is a representative of the Union Solidarity and Development Party, a proxy party for the old government which has an overwhelming majority of parliament seats. The USDP candidate has not lodged a complaint against Aung San Suu Kyi.

The April First elections will fill just 48 vacant parliament seats, well short of the number needed to challenge the ruling party’s legislative power. But one month before polls, the strong show of support for the National League for Democracy and its high profile leader have demonstrated that, despite some 20 years spent largely on the political sidelines, the party still commands a significant public following.

You May Like

Westgate Mall Attack Survivors Confront Painful Memories

On anniversary of terror attack, survivors discuss how they have coped with trauma they experienced that day More

Iraqi Kurd President Urges World Community to Protect Syrian City

Islamic State fighters are besieging Kobani, also known as Ayn al-Arab, after seizing at least 21 surrounding villages in a major assault against city on Syria's northern border with Turkey More

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

Conservationists hail ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015 More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctionsi
X
September 18, 2014 2:28 AM
A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctions

A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Belgian Researchers Discover Way to Block Cancer Metastasis

Cancer remains one of the deadliest diseases, despite many new methods to combat it. Modern medicine has treatments to prevent the growth of primary tumor cells. But most cancer deaths are caused by metastasis, the stage when primary tumor cells change and move to other parts of the body. A team of Belgian scientists says it has found a way to prevent that process. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Mogadishu's Flood of Foreign Workers Leaves Somalis Out of Work

Unemployment and conflict has forced many young Somalians out of the country in search of a better life. But a newfound stability in the once-lawless nation has created hope — and jobs — which, some say, are too often being filled by foreigners. Abdulaziz Billow reports from Mogadishu.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.
Video

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

China says its has sentenced three men to death and one woman to life in prison for a deadly knife attack in March that left more than 30 dead and 140 injured. Beijing says Muslim militants from China's restive western region of Xinjiang carried out the attacks. Now, more than six months after the incident, residents in the city are still coping with the aftermath. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Kunming.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid