Myanmar poll results formally annulled as military claims voter fraud
Bangkok, July 27 (EFE).- Myanmar military rulers have formally annulled the Nov.8 election results, claiming widespread irregularities by the ruling National League for Democracy (NLD) of Aung San Suu Kyi, state media reported Tuesday.
The military claimed that a probe found 11.3 million fraud cases in the elections swept by the NLD.
The military has cited the alleged irregularities, rejected by international observers of the polls, as the justification for the Feb.1 that ended the nascent democracy in Myanmar.
“It was found that the election was not free and fair,” said the poll commission chairman, Thein Soe.
The head of the military-controlled poll body formed after the coup declared that it “annulled” the poll results, said state-run The Global New Light of Myanmar.
The poll commission also accused the NLD, which was in power since 2015 before the coup, of misusing administrative power and Covid-19 regulations and interfering in the election process “to grab the state power.”
The Asian Network for Free Elections (ANFREL) had sent 24 observers for the Myanmar polls. More than 27.5 million voters participated in the elections.
In its final report in May, the poll monitor said that the “results of the 2020 general elections were, by and large, representative of the will of the people of Myanmar.”
Soe had previously called for the outlawing and dissolution of the NLD party for allegedly orchestrating the widespread voter fraud.
The commission had also sought that NLD leaders, including Suu Kyi, be prosecuted as “traitors.”
The military junta headed by General Min Aung Hlaing has promised to hold elections without setting a possible date.
Suu Kyi is under detention since the coup.
The military rulers have charged her with several offenses, including corruption, violating the Official Secrets Act, a crime punishable by up to 14 years in prison, as well as violating Covid-19 protocols.
Almost six months after the coup, the junta has still not managed to gain control of the country despite a brutal crackdown on dissent that has left nearly 1,000 people dead, figures from the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners show.
The violent response has failed to quell the massive opposition movement that has challenged the junta.
Some protesters have also taken up arms against the military. Several ethnic guerrillas have opened combat fronts throughout the country. EFE