Myanmar junta annuls election held 20 years ago

Reuters

Posted at Mar 11 2010 05:46 PM | Updated as of Mar 12 2010 01:46 AM

YANGON, Myanmar - Myanmar's military government on Thursday officially annulled the results of the country's 1990 general election, a poll it chose to ignore at the time when the main opposition party won by a landslide.

The 1990 polls were declared null and void because they did not comply with a new parliamentary election law enacted this week, the junta said in a statement published in Thursday's official newspapers.

"It must be deemed that the results of the multiparty democracy elections held under that annulled law have also been annulled automatically since they are not consistent with this new law," it said in the announcement in state media.

The National League for Democracy (NLD) party, led by Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi, won the 1990 election, taking 392 of the 485 seats in parliament, but it was never allowed to rule.

The junta, then known as the State Law and Order Restoration Council, said it would honour the result but refused to allow the NLD to take office until a new constitution was drafted and an investigation conducted into the polls.

Myanmar plans to hold an election this year, the first since the 1990 vote, but the process has already been derided by critics as a sham to entrench nearly five decades of military rule in the former British colony.