President says no to change of path
President Thein Sein has confirmed that he will not change the oath that members of parliament are asked to speak in order to enter parliament.
Currently the oath expects new MPs to state that they will ‘safeguard’ the constitution. This wording has created a stumbling block for the 43 new National League for Democracy (NLD) parliamentarians led by Aung San Suu Kyi. Because they don’t agree with the constitution and want to see it changed they say they want the wording of the oath to be changed to ‘respect’ the constitution.
The impasse means that Aung San Suu Kyi and her team are unlikely to enter parliament today as scheduled. The president has confirmed that democratisation will continue within the framework he has laid down.
Meanwhile the president, who is currently visiting Japan, has met with Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda and received a pledge that $3.7 billion in Burmese debt will be ‘forgiven’. Prime Minister Noda also announced that Japan was pledging $7.4 billion in development aid to five Mekong Delta countries, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam.
Last week the Tokyo Stock Exchange and Daiwa Securities Group agreed that they would help Myanmar to develop a stock exchange, expected to come into force by 2015.