NLD Calls on New Govt to Respect Law
The National League for Democracy (NLD) has called on President Thein Sein to ensure his newly formed government establishes the rule of law.
The NLD released a statement on Monday which disclosed that party Vice President Tin Oo wrote a letter to Thein Sein on April 5 that highlighted that cases are still being tried behind closed doors at Insein Prison despite the forming of the new government.
“To achieve the rule of law, we sent a letter to the new president urging him to reform previous injustices. There are still cases being tried behind closed doors. We urged him not to let this happen any longer and to act in accordance with the law to help develop a democratic country,” senior NLD member Win Tin told The Irrawaddy on Tuesday.
In the letter, the NLD referred to Thein Sein’s speech to the new government on April 1 which promised that judicial bodies will carry out their role in accordance with the constitution.
Key elements of the speech include the open handling of judicial affairs, the right to a defence and for judgment to be passed in public. The judiciary must also accept legislative constraints and allow those convicted of a crime to appeal the decision in a higher court.
Meanwhile, the National Unity Party (NUP)—the second largest party in Burma’s general election—said that it agreed that the rule of law is important to develop a democratic nation.
“We have to wait and see how they perform in accordance with the president’s address,” said Han Shwe, central executive member of the pro-military party which gained a total of 54 seats in the national and regional parliaments.
“To achieve the influence of law across the country, the government itself must respect the law as a first step and then the entire citizenship can also respect the law,” said a lawyer from Rangoon.
On Monday, Kurt Campbell, the US assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, said that efforts to engage with the Burmese government had failed and there are still ongoing abuses to ethnic minorities, imprisoning of political prisoners and no democratic reform.
Original link : http://www.irrawaddy.org/article.php?art_id=21182