Few Checked Names On Voters’ Lists

Voters’ list in Legone ward, Myitkyina, the capital of Kachin State of northern Burma.

Not many citizens of Myitkyina, the capital of Kachin State, checked whether their names were included on voters’ lists. Despite this, the deadline has nearly passed.

Naw Sang, head of Dukahtawng ward, said only about 2,000 checked the list for his ward, even though it included 7,000 names. “An average of 100 came to check their names every day. I don’t think people are interested in this election.”

Tu Lum, headman for Legone ward, said more than 16,000 are registered to vote, but only twenty percent confirmed their information. He said about 200 checked the list everyday. “People in our ward can’t think about politics when they have to prioritize their daily survival.”

After the NLD government enacted a partial lockdown in early April, many citizens of Burma, unable to work, struggled to put food on the table.

In the last month, the lockdown has been gradually reduced.

Outside of the capital, in Pa La Na village, about 5,000 checked their names on the list of 8,000 residents. Headman Thet Naing said he believes there is more interest from his community in the upcoming election than during the 2015 election.

The Kachin State Election Commission wanted citizens to ensure their names were spelled correctly and their ID numbers were accurate to avoid being disqualified in case of errors when polling stations opened on November 8. The lists were posted on July 25 and will be taken down after August 8.

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