Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – The Burmese junta’s electoral watchdog yesterday formally released its list of the 330 lower house constituencies to be contested in the country’s first general elections in 20 years, and each township is represented.
The Union Election Commission (UEC), based in the capital Naypyidaw, announced the list for the lower house yesterday, but it appeared only in today’s state-run daily newspapers. It has not however set the polling date. The latest observer forecast for a poll date is December.
Shan State has the most number of separate electorates on the list with 55 constituencies, Rangoon Division is second at 45, Sagaing has 37 and Mandalay, 36. Kayah (Karenni) and Karen states share the least number with seven each.
Observers believe the polls will be held in December after comments in a speech delivered by junta Livestock Breeding and Fisheries Minister Maung Maung Thein at a seminar held at the Fisheries’ Department offices in which he said it would be “the busiest month”. The last forecast based on public opinion was on the “three-10 date”, October 10, 2010.
The list of constituencies for the upper house (National Assembly) and States and Regions Assembly (State Assembly) will also be printed in state-run daily papers in coming days.
Sources told Mizzima that the UEC, which critics commonly regarded as a “puppet organisation” of the junta, was conducting training for district- and township-level poll-booth officials. But public awareness campaigns and voter education on the methods, rules and regulations governing the polls were still weak, which left such work to political parties.
People’s Assembly (Lower House) constituencies
|1.||Kachin State – 18|
|2.||Kayah (Karenni) State – 7|
|3.||Karen State – 7|
|4.||Chin State – 9|
|5.||Sagaing Division – 37|
|6.||Tanintharyyi Division – 10|
|7.||Pegu Division – 28|
|8.||Magway Division – 25|
|9.||Mandalay Division – 36|
|10.||Mon State – 10|
|11.||Rakhine State – 17|
|12.||Rangoon Division – 45|
|13.||Shan State – 55|
|14.||Irrawaddy Division – 26|