Parliament speaker urges president to hold six-party talk

Parliament session held in January 22 (Photo-EMG)

Union Parliament Speaker Thura Shwe Mann urged President Thein Sein on January 22 to comply with parliament's demand to hold a six-party talk as soon as possible.

In a formal letter, the speaker urged the president to hold a six-party talk between the president, the lower house speaker, the upper house speaker, the chairperson of the National League for Democracy (NLD), a representative for all ethnic groups and the commander-in-chief of the defence services in order to discuss how to make the constitution more applicable to the current state of affairs in Myanmar.

The speaker's letter continued that the six-party talk can help produce stability, peace, national reconciliation and democratic reform and must therefore be held at the earliest possible date.

Earlier this week, President Thein Sein sent a message to the parliament responding to the proposal to hold six-party talk, saying: “Such a meeting would be good as long as it represented all people, including civic organizations and political forces." 

Some have interpreted the president's prioritisation of inclusiveness as a way of postponing the six-party meeting. 

The parliament's original proposal for the talk said: “The emergence of a constitution appropriate to the current age and political system depends on time and circumstances. To create favourable conditions for Myanmar in the present time and the future, the parliament is urged to hold a six-party talk between the president, the lower house speaker and the upper house speaker, the chairperson of National League for Democracy (NLD), a representative for all ethnic groups and commander-in-chief of the defence services."

Aung San Suu Kyi, chairperson of NLD, said she would not accept any meetings that are put on just for show. She said she would only accept genuine talks and continue to  push for national reconciliation.