Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi is to register her political party this week to contest a by-election expected to be held in early 2012, opposition sources said on Tuesday.
Suu Kyi and six other members of the National League for Democracy (NLD) would travel to the capital Naypyitaw on Friday to register the party, bringing it back into the legal fold, NLD spokesman Nyan Win said.
The NLD was dissolved as a legal entity last year after it refused to contest the November 7 general election on the grounds that the junta then ruling the country had issued party registration laws that would have forced them to drop Suu Kyi as a member of the party in order to run.
Myanmar’s parliament recently amended the party registration regulations, paving the way for the NLD to apply to re-register on November 25. The Election Commission approved the NLD’s application on December 12.
Suu Kyi has vowed to contest a by-election for 48 seats left vacant when the current cabinet members took office in late March.
The polls are expected to be held in March or April.
“I expect they (the by-elections) will be after March, because the election commission will have to give new parties enough time to prepare,” Ko Ko Hlaing, an advisor to Myanmar President Thein Sein, told the Myanmar Times, a weekly.
Myanmar held its first general election in two decades on November 7, 2010, bringing to power the pro-military Union Solidarity and Development Party, which formed a government on March 30.
The 2010 polls were widely condemned by Western democracies for failing to include the main opposition party – the National League for Democracy led by Nobel laureate Suu Kyi, 66. – Sapa-dpa