Myanmar opposition party says 5 million sign petition to change constitution
Published on Jul 22, 2014 6:36 PM
YANGON (REUTERS) - Myanmar's main opposition party says it has collected about five million signatures seeking reduced powers for unelected military members of parliament as the country, which emerged from dictatorship in 2011, moves towards an election next year.
The National League for Democracy (NLD), led by Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, has spearheaded the campaign, which ended on Saturday, to rescind Section 436 of the constitution. That clause requires a 75 per cent vote in parliament to amend most sections of the constitution - all but impossible for an opposition party to achieve.
But the NLD's efforts are unlikely to make much of a difference.
Shwe Mann, speaker of parliament, said this month that the petition would not influence the work of a parliamentary committee tasked with recommending constitutional amendments. Shwe Mann is also chairman of the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP), made up mainly of former officers.
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