Myanmar says voter turnout was 77 per cent
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Last Updated: Wednesday, December 08, 2010, 16:10
Yangon: Myanmar's Election Commission announced voter turnout today, a month after widely criticised elections, saying 77 per cent of the country's 29 million eligible voters cast ballots.

Myanmar's main military-backed political party overwhelmingly won the country's first election in two decades, though official results have yet to be released.

Official media reported over the weekend that the Union Solidarity and Development Party won 882 of 1,154 parliamentary seats in November 7 polls.

Opponents as well as outside critics of the junta, such as the US government, have dismissed the vote as neither free nor fair, and say it was manipulated to ensure the military's allies would win.

Today's release of voter turnout followed a few blunders by the Election Commission, which previously reported it exceeded 100 per cent in some constituencies. The commission also declared two pro-junta candidates winners in constituencies in Kachin State where elections had been cancelled.

The election results assure the military, which has ruled Myanmar since 1962, will continue to wield decisive power.

Previously held elections in 1990 were overwhelmingly won by the National League for Democracy, led by Aung San Suu Kyi, but the military did not recognise the results.

Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, was recently released from her latest period of house arrest. She has been in detention for more than 15 of the last 21 years.


First Published: Wednesday, December 08, 2010, 16:10

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