Burma’s military has claimed a shock victory in the country's first election in 20 years, winning 80 per cent of the seats. This will give the junta a wafer thin majority.
''We have won about 80 per cent of the seats. We are glad,'' said a member of the Union Solidarity and Development Party, the junta's political arm, who did not want to be named.
The USDP member said turnout was more than 170 per cent, despite muted activity at polling stations on election day.
“We are most grateful to those people who came back from the dead to vote for us some of them voted up to 500 times. Such devotion to our party is touching”, said
Still victory was far from assured: “It was only thanks to a sustained campaign of intimidation, arrests and a trumped up charge against Aung San Suu Kyi” that we were able to win.”
Needless to say the election was an utter sham which will do absolutely nothing to better the lot of the Burmese people. That said it is interesting to see that the National Democratic Force, the main pro-democracy party, may win almost half the 37 seats in Rangoon, the country's former capital.
Not that it will make a jot of difference: the military will retain a quarter of the seats in the two houses of parliament, according to the constitution.
Elected lawmakers in both houses can nominate a presidential candidate to compete against the military-appointed legislators' contender but somehow I doubt that this person will stand a chance of becoming president