Arakan National Party presents policy and programmes

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Dr Aye Maung, Chairman of Arakan National Party.
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Dr Aye Maung, Chairman of Arakan National Party, presented policies, attitudes and programmes of his party on 16 February 2017, on radio and TV programmes. The translation of his presentation is given below:
Esteemed voters,
I wish all of you health and happiness. I am Chairman Dr Aye Maung of the Arakan National Party.
Our Arakan National Party (ANP), looking forward to the interests and unity of all Rakhine nationalities, emerged after merging Arakan League for Democracy (ALD) which won 11 seats representing Rakhine ethnic group in 1990 elections and Rakhine Nationalities Development Party (RNDP) which won 35 seats in 2010 election.
I would like to express the three basic policies of ANP as follows:
For emergence of genuine federal union (that is to say “To establish genuine federal union formed with ‘ethnic-based states’ which guarantees rights of self-determination of Rakhine nationalities and equality of all nationalities including Bamar.)
For promoting the interests of all Rakhine nationalities and other nationalities living in Rakhine state and to safeguard these interests perpetually
To strive for flourishing of democracy
Esteemed voters,
The entire people had suffered hardship bitterly for over sixty years due to internal strifes and mismanagement since independence and are suffering till today. The innocent people are facing difficulties as a result of internal armed conflicts which demand national liberation. We believe that the basic cause of internal armed conflicts is due to lack of equality among nationalities, lack of self-determination and self-administration. Therefore, we, daringly and magnanimously, need to strive for gaining eternal peace by ending the internal strifes. With this end in view, we, hands held together, are to focus on emergence of a constitution that guarantees democracy and based on genuine federal union.
Esteemed voters,
According to the policy of membership of our party, we definitely prescribe that the Arakan National Party is not just for Rakhine nationality. All the nationalities residing in Rakhine state including Rakhine people and Rakhine nationalities can apply for membership in Rakhine National Party, and the party will stand for all the nationalities in Rakhine state. Moreover, we will actively take part in the affairs of the entire union.
We will also strive for building infrastructures for education, health and culture including job opportunities which are essential to the interests of nationalities living in Myanmar including all Rakhine nationalities and other nationalities living in Rakhine state.
Based on the above-mentioned three basic policies, we have laid down 18 procedures as future tasks of the party.
Esteemed voters,
The election to be held on 1 April 2017 is just the bye election. It is one of the important steps to be taken for our Rakhine people to be able to march towards the goal of our self-determination. As our Arakan National Party won majority seats in Rakhine state Hluttaw in 2015 elections, we are in a position to lead the state Hluttaw and march forward. For the sake of Rakhine people and to be in accordance with the desire of Rakhine people, the Arakan National Party earnestly and democratically made demand for forming the Rakhine state government playing a leading role. But, it is known to the entire people that the desire of the Arakan National Party and the Rakhine people was ignored with the loopholes in the existing constitution taken advantage of.
As regards Bengali affairs which is directly related to Rakhine state, we come to see that we need a strong opposition system in Myanmar these days because we have seen no strength to repulse the pressures of various forms coming from forces outside Myanmar and remedy the weaknesses in check and balance system among Hluttaw and the government. Therefore, leaders of Arakan National Party decided that it is a time to include in Pyidaungsu Hluttaw candidates who can point out strongly.
In successive ages, Rakhine people have risked their lives to regain the lost national privileges resorting to various ways and means. Our Arakan National Party also is striving with our utmost efforts to regain these privileges. This bye election is one of the efforts for such privilege. The Arakan National Party will contest the bye election for two seats. I, Dr Aye Maung, will contest a seat at Pyithu Hlataw in Ann Township constituency and U Aye Kyaw, a seat at Pyithu Hlattaw in Hlinethaya Township constituency.
All the people know that whenever Rakhine people face difficulties, Arakan National Party has tried to overcome these difficulties together with the people and hand in hand with organizations which serve the interests of Rakhine people.
With such a tradition, Rakhine people together with Rakhine National Development Party could have made history in the 2010 elections as the third most winning party in the Republic of the Union of Myanmar. As RNDP won 2010 elections as the third most winning party, Myanmar government, national race leaders, international governments and international organizations had to acknowledge “the guts of the entire Rakhine people”.
Out of 77 seats contested by ANP in 2015 elections, the party won 45 seats and again stood as the third most winning party. Moreover, the independent candidate who won a seat in Rakhine state Hluttaw sided with us.
We strongly believe that it is a historic duty of Rakhine people for ANP to win landslide victory at the contested two seats at the bye election to be held on 1 April 2017.
Esteemed voters,
ANP will not waver from the first and important goal of the party’s three objectives namely “emergence of genuine federal union” and we will not give up in marching towards this goal. During the Union Peace (21st Century Panglong) Conference, we read a paper thoroughly stating that what is the genuine federal union which we want standing firmly on our attitude.
Excerpts from the paper are as follows:
Nationalities including Bamar form nationality state and power sharing between the nationality state and central government must be sharing through the essence of the genuine federal union. In sharing power, we proclaimed that the principle of the sovereignty of the whole federal union to be vested in the central government must be derived from the states, and the principle of excepting the power vested in the central government by the states needed for runing the union, all the remnant powers must be vested in the states.
The two hluttaws at the Union level must be separate hluttaws with equal rights. The two hluttaws should not be convened together. In electing the Head of State (the President) of the federal union, alternative system must be practiced based on ethnicity.
International and domestic investments and projects in states are to be directly managed by state governments. The benefits and revenue coming from these projects are to be fully managed and enjoyed by states.
States national armies formed in the respective states are under the control of the respective states. The federal union army is to be formed proportionately with troops sent from state national armies.
The state is the owner of natural resources and it has the right to manage them. The income from these natural resources must be controlled by states and sharing of the income with the federal government must be in the hands of state governments. The fund to be provided to the treasury of the federal government must be approved by the respective state hluttaws.
We read this paper to make others know our desire of the genuine federal union and we made presentation that only when such a union can be built, will the civil war end and will we be able to reach the goal of federal union with equality and dignity.
To establish such a genuine federal union, the ANP will seek all ways and means such as amending the constitution, participating in union peace process and making proclamation through our elected hluttaw representatives.
Esteemed voters,
If the incidents that happened these days in our country are retrospected we can see that due to a concept not based on national security but the management and executive branches based on indiscriminate liberal concept, the country is on the verge of backwardness as General Aung San once said that the country was like a person who had to deal with everybody behaving humbly. If we look at the acts of encroachment upon Myanmar’s sovereignty and putting pressure on her, we should not tolerate such acts and we can make a conclusion that only with a mechanism that includes strong opposition, will we be able to hand down more prosperous Myanmar to the generations to come.
Therefore, I would like to urge you to cast your vote in favour of us. By voting Arakan National Party, strive to save Rakhine state and all nationalities. By voting us, save the Union of Myanmar not to fall into the hands of neocolonialists.
May all the voters be free from all danger. May a genuine federal union of Myanmar based on democracy emerge.
(Unofficial Translation)

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