YANGON: The Myanmar parliament will select a new president on Wednesday, with lawmakers choosing among three vice presidents for the successor to Htin Kyaw, the country’s civilian president who resigned last week.
Mann Win Khine Than, speaker of the Union Parliament, announced during a plenary session that the election will be held at 10am on Wednesday.
Htin Kyaw resigned suddenly on Wednesday in a move believed prompted by ill health. However, his wife later denied reports that his health was a factor, saying it was meant to make way for a more experienced and capable leader.
Htin Kyaw, a close friend of State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi, the country’s de facto leader, became president in March 2016.
The electoral college comprising elected civilian members and appointed military officials of both houses of parliament will vote on Wednesday to elect the new president from among the three vice presidents: Myint Swe of the military, the upper house’s Henry Vanthio and Win Myint of the lower house.
Win Myint, 66, a close aide of Suu Kyi, is favoured to win the election.
Win Myint has been a lawmaker at the lower house since 2012, together with Suu Kyi, when her National League for Democracy Party was a minority in the parliament.
He served as a secretary of the Rule of Law, Peace, and Tranquility Committee, which Suu Kyi chaired in the lower house until 2016.
Formerly a lawyer, Win Myint became a political prisoner for his role in a 1988 popular uprising against military rule. He later joined Suu Kyi’s party and won a seat in the 1990 general election, whose results the military later nullified.
According to the Constitution drafted and approved in 2008 by the ruling junta at that time, the president is elected by members of an electoral college consisting of the elected civilian members as well as appointed military officers of both houses of the parliament.
Myanmar was ruled by the military for decades until 2011, when it voluntarily stepped down after installing a quasi civilian government led by former army generals.
The current government led by Suu Kyi came to power after her party’s sweeping victory in the 2015 elections, winning around 80 percent of the seats in both houses of parliament. She was barred from becoming president by a constitutional provision drafted specifically against her. / Bangkok Post / 26 Mar 2018 at 19:14 / WRITER: KYODO NEWS / All photographs, news, editorials, opinions, information, data, others have been taken from the Internet ..aseanews.net | [email protected] / For comments, Email to : Aseanews.Net | [email protected] | Contributor: