Aung San Suu Kyi reiterates she will run the government if party wins polls

Myanmar oppostion leader Aung San Suu Kyi speaking to media about the general election in Yangon on Nov 5.
Myanmar oppostion leader Aung San Suu Kyi speaking to media about the general election in Yangon on Nov 5. PHOTO: REUTERS

YANGON (AFP) - Myanmar’s opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi on Thursday (Nov 5) vowed to run the government if her opposition party wins this Sunday’s landmark election, despite being barred from the presidency.

“I will run the government and we will have a president who will work in accordance with the policies of the NLD (National League for Democracy),” she told reporters.

Under the military-scripted constitution, Ms Suu Kyi, 70, is barred from running for the presidency by a clause believed to have been written specifically to thwart her bid for the country’s top office.

The clause blocks those with foreign-born offspring taking the top post.

Ms Suu Kyi has towered over Myanmar’s politics after a decades-long struggle for democracy and her party is expected to make major gains at Sunday’s polls.

Many hope the election will be the country’s freest and fairest for a generation.

An opposition win could see the military’s longstanding stranglehold over the country eased.

But the army retains a 25 per cent bloc of seats in parliament – gifted by the same controversial charter.

Its lawmakers essentially have a veto over major policy, including any changes to the constitution.

Observers say Ms Suu Kyi could seek an alliance with a compromise candidate for the presidency, which will be decided after the election.