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The European Rohingya Council (ERC)

Saenredamstraat 53-3,1072CC Amsterdam. The Netherlands Registered Number: KVK- 56454791

Ref: DE/0050251

Date: 25.08.2015

ERC condemns the decision of Myanmar election commission to bar

Rohingya MP from reelection
The European Rohingya Council (ERC) condemns the recent decision made by the Myanmar authoritys election
commission to prevent current Member of Parliament Mr. Shwe Maung from running re-election this November to
the lower house as an independent candidate of his Rakhine State constituency.
Despite his more than four years as a Member of Parliament of the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party
(USDP) and documented evidence, the commission claimed that his parents were not citizens at the time of his birth.
The accusation is not true as both his parents and his grandparents are all citizens of Myanmar like other Rohingya,
and received National Registration Cards (only ID card existed at that time) in 1957. Father of Mr. Shwe Maung,
Abdul Hadi, born in 1918, served as a career-long police officer in the National Police Force in Rakhine State until
his retirement in 1978 (note that only citizens of the country can serve in armed forces). Mr. Shwe Maung, born in
1965, is currently serving as a member of the parliament; therefore, is citizen of Myanmar.
Following governments decisions in June this year, hundreds of thousands of Rohingya have been vanished from
voter rolls, and will likely be unable to cast ballots in the upcoming general election. This comes despites the fact that
the Rohingya were eligible to vote, and had taken part in every election since Myanmar became independent from
Britain in 1948, including in the previous elections in 2010.
It is obvious that the decision to reject his candidacy is nothing more than another attempt by authorities to
disenfranchise and persecute Rohingya, part of a broader government-backed campaign to drive them out of the
country. The decision is not based on legal ground; rather it is based on the ethnicity, hatred and discrimination against
the helpless Rohingya minority. The right to run for election is as fundamental as the right to vote, and cannot be
denied on the basis of religion or ethnicity.
We, therefore, call upon Myanmar Election Commission to reverse the decision, and are appealing the international
community including EU, ASEAN, UN and OIC to take necessary measures to ensure Mr. Shwe Maung, and other
Rohingya can run as independent candidates for the parliament as well as Rohingya can vote in the upcoming election
so that election is in line with democratic principles.
Khairul Amin (Chairman)

For more information please contact;

Khairul Amin + 4792428989
U Hla Tin

Chairman. Fossveien 7.3400 Lier. Norway. +47 92428989| | General Secretary

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