Suu Kyi forecast to succeed in Myanmar’s vote

By AFP Source: Published: 2020/11/8 16:05:45

People stand in a queue to vote during a multi-party general elections outside a polling station in Yangon, Myanmar, Nov. 8, 2020. (Photo: Xinhua)

Polls opened in Myanmar on Sunday morning for a vote expected to return to power the government of Aung San Suu Kyi, who remains a hero at home.

The election will be just the second since the Southeast Asian nation emerged from nearly half a century of junta rule in 2011.

Five years ago, Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy (NLD) won a landslide victory, but was forced by the constitution into an uneasy power-sharing agreement with the still-mighty military.

This time the civilian leader has implored citizens to overcome their fears of coronavirus to turn out and cast their ballots.

"Every single voter is writing their own history, this election's history and our country's history," she told the nation in a video message posted on Facebook Thursday.

Voters across the country joined long lines before the sun had even risen on Sunday as they waited for polling stations to open, largely maintaining physical distance and wearing compulsory face masks in the coronavirus-disturbed vote.

Cases have spiraled upward in recent months, sending swathes of the country into lockdown and largely forcing election campaigns online, where hate speech between rival factions has flourished.

But Suu Kyi, who has placed herself front and center in the fight against the epidemic, refused to postpone the polls.

"I'm not at all afraid of being infected with COVID-19," said 27-year-old Khine Zar Chi, voting for her first time in downtown Yangon. "I don't care if I die for Mother Suu."

Authorities allowed the elderly to vote in advance - including the 75-year-old Suu Kyi and the president - as well as internal migrants casting ballots in temporary constituencies.


Posted in:

blog comments powered by Disqus