Myanmar’s Union Election Commission (UEC) on Tuesday rejected all but one candidate from an Islamic party based on citizenship requirements before general elections in November in a move that could lead to the party’s disbandment, the organization’s political leader said. The commission rejected the applications of 17 of 18 candidates who had filed to run for parliamentary seats as members of the Democracy and Human Rights Party (DHRP), Kyaw Min (a) Mahmood Shomshul Anwarul Haque, the party’s chairman, told RFA’s Myanmar Service. Eleven of the rejected candidates are from Rakhine state, and the six others are from the Yangon division, he said, leaving only one party candidate to stand in the elections. “The rejection notice did not mention detailed reasons behind the decision, but just said the candidates were rejected for violations based on laws and regulations,” he said.
The DHRP is preparing to appeal to the UEC within seven days, although it has not filed yet, said Kyaw Min, a Rohingya candidate who himself was rejected, although he was a member of the parliament elected in 1990 elections.
If the UEC rejects the party’s appeal, the DHRP, which was founded by Muslim politicians and activists, would be deregistered under a provision in the country’s Political Parties Registration Law that requires a party to put forth at least three candidates or face disbandment.
By law, the DHRP cannot replace the rejected candidates, Kyaw Min said. “If rejected, our party will be forced to disband due to [an insufficient] required number of candidates needed to survive after the elections,” he said.