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No postponement of elections in Myanmar despite COVID 19 surge

In an online interaction with the media, the Union Election Commission (UEC) of Myanmar pledged to hold the elections while ensuring measures to prevent the spread of Coronavirus in the country. 

Last week 24 parties including the military backed main opposition Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) had demanded postponement of elections citing problems in campaigning and other public health related issues. 

The ruling National League for Democracy (NLD) headed by the state Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi supports holding elections on the date announced by the UEC. 

In the wake of the lockdown, political parties have stopped campaigning in Yangon, reports Reutres.

However, to ensure social distancing during the polls scheduled to be held on November 8, the UEC has increased the number of polling stations from 40,000 to 50,000.

In the meanwhile, a stay at home order has been issued for the entire Yangon Region excluding Cocogyun Township after a record 671 new Corona cases were reported on Sunday. Yangon is the biggest city of Myanmar. Garment factories have been asked to shut down operations from 24 Sept till October 7. Private offices have been asked to allow employees to work from home. 

On Monday also 264 new Corona positive cases were reported from Myanmar taking the total number of infections in the country to 5805. Death of 94 people due to Corona has been reported so far. 

 

 

Rajesh Jha/Dhaka/21.9.2020

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