UNA party members not ready to sign peace and national reconciliation pledge

One of the leaders of the United Nationalities Alliance (UNA) Aye Thar Aung said on May 8 that UNA members will not sign the peace and national reconciliation pledge that was signed by government officials, most political parties and some ethnic armed groups on Union Day in February 2015.

Wa explains why Panghsan leaves some groups

The long distance to each region, the Panghsan conference left out some ethnic armed groups, said Aung Myint, the representative of United Wa State Party (UWSP) on May 6 evening during the press conference.

Implementation committee for constitutional amendment is in its final stage.

The Implementation Committee for Constitutional Amendment has almost concluded its duties, yet drafting groups have yet to put forward the relevant bill to the parliament, San Pyae, the joint-secretary of the Joint Bill Committee, said.

“The committee already submitted the report on constitutional amendment. Later the six-party talk was submitted again. The parliament is going ahead as it planned. The parliament has other important issues to be prioritised. Therefore constitutional amendment is not progressing as we expected.

President to meet ethnic rebel groups in Kengtung

Myanmar President Thein Sein was scheduled to meet Friday with several ethnic armed groups in Kengtung, Shan State, but further details have not been released.

Reports say the meeting was to take place in the evening, with the United Wa State Party/United Wa State Army (UWSP/UWSA), National Democratic Alliance Army (NDAA) and Restoration Council of Shan State/Shan State Army planning to attend.

Panghsan summit releases 12-point agreement

Wa's demand for an independent state received support from some representatives of the ethnic armed forces during a summit in Panghsang in Shan State that concluded Wednesday with a 12-point agreement, a news release says.
The United Wa State Party/ United Wa State Army (UWSA) hosted the summit in Shan State, which is home to its headquarters. The Chinese-speaking Wa Special Region 2 is located in Northern Shan State and uses the Chinese currency renminbi. It has a population estimated at more than half a million.

Joint bill committee awaits charter change bill

The Union Parliament Joint Bill Committee has yet to receive the constitutional amendments bill to be discussed during the parliamentary session that will resume on Monday, committee secretary Saw Hla Tun said Wednesday.

The Lower House Parliament's Legal Affairs and the Special Issues Assessment Commission and the Union Parliament's Constitutional Amendment Implementation Committee as well as other organisations involved in drafting the bill continue to discuss possible charter amendments, the secretary said.

Thein Sein calls for election unity

President Thein Sein is urging citizens to work together for a successful general election this year through a radio speech delivered on May 4, adding that the election is a turning point for Myanmar's democratic transition.  

"The 2015 general election is very important for democratic reform. Political groups and people should all join forces for the successful completion of the election. I am determined to work for successful democratic reform. And I promise to put every effort into achieving it," the president said.

Govt awaits outcome of ethnic conference to sign nationwide ceasefire: Thein Sein

The government is ready to sign a nationwide ceasefire agreement pending the outcome of the ongoing ethnic conference in Panghsan in Shan State, President Thein Sein said in his monthly radio address on Monday.

Ethnic armed groups call for constitutional change

Ethnic armed groups attending a three-day conference in Panghsan in Shan State over the weekend were unified in their demand that the 2008 constitution be amended, those in attendance report.

The ethnic armed group revealed their political positions and reached a consensus that constitutional change is vital to Myanmar's future, said Colonel Khun Oakka, patron of the Pao National Liberation Organisation.

Press being gagged: Suu Kyi

Myanmar has a lot of work to do achieve press freedom, according to Aung San Suu Kyi, the chairperson of Parliament’s Rule of Law, Peace and Stability Committee.

She was speaking to mark World Press Freedom Day at the Novotel Hotel in Yangon on May 3. Minister for the President’s Office Ye Htut and Lower House MP Khine Maung Yi, from Parliament’s information committee attended the event.