December 15, 2016

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A MATTER OF TEAMWORK

Political dialogue framework drafting kicks off

Dr Salai Lian Hmung Sakhong, who represents an ethnic group ceasefire signatories, is pictured during the first round of a nine-member political dialogue framework drafting team meeting at Myanmar Peace Centre yesterday. Photo: Myanmar Peace Centre
Dr Salai Lian Hmung Sakhong, who represents an ethnic group ceasefire signatories, is pictured during the first round of a nine-member political dialogue framework drafting team meeting at Myanmar Peace Centre yesterday. Photo: Myanmar Peace Centre

A nine-member team began the task of drawing up the details of a political dialogue framework at Myanmar Peace Centre in Yangon yesterday. The remaining members of those selected to represent political parties and the current government’s side were also confirmed, according to a spokesperson.
“The drafting of the framework began today,” U Hla Maung Shwe, who represents the government side, told The Global New Light of Myanmar yesterday.
The government has selected Dr Kyaw Yin Hlaing, a director at Myanmar Peace Centre, as its representative to the team, while political parties named U Naing Ngan Lin who is currently Pyithu Hluttaw (Lower House) representative from the National League for Democracy party.
“Today was very productive. It will take until 5 December to finalize the details,” said U Thu Wai, who also represents the group of political parties.
The framework is expected to be submitted for approval by the President on 15 or 16 December and will first require approval from the relevant meetings on 7-9 December in Yangon and 12-14 December in Nay Pyi Taw, added U Thu Wai.
The joint drafting team of three members from each of the political parties, the present government and ethnic group ceasefire signatories was formed on Monday.
According to a press conference held afterwards, the framework will be drafted between 1 and 5 December and it will pave the way for political dialogue, which will take place no later than 14 January as per the requirements of the nationwide ceasefire agreement, which was signed in October.
The names of those who will also be involved in drafting the framework were announced at the press conference, with one more representative from political party and the government to be confirmed on Tuesday.
According to Monday’s announcement, Deputy Minister for Defence Rear Admiral Myint Nwe and U Hla Maung Shwe, a senior adviser at Myanmar Peace Centre, were selected on behalf of the government side while U Thu Wai of Democratic Party (Myanmar) and Sai Kyaw Nyunt of Shan National League for Democracy were named to represent political parties.
Ethnic ceasefire signatories declared its full list of representatives on Monday, which includes Dr Salai Lian Hmung Sakhong of Chin National Front, U Myo Win of All Burma Students’ Democratic Front and Saw Kyaw Nyunt of Karen National Union/Karen National Liberation Army (Peace Council).
In accordance with the concepts approved at the three-day meeting, the framework must be drafted in accordance with the terms of the national ceasefire agreement signed in October, and a new draft framework will be set up collaboratively, making it flexible enough to accommodate a transition of government in Myanmar, said a spokesperson.
Although various stakeholders drew up frameworks before the ceasefire deal was signed, it has been agreed that each will be considered as a reference tool only as amalgamating the contents of each framework would be overly complicated.
Over the past three days, the drafting committee has reached an agreement on 10 elements, which include basic principles, representation and participation of stakeholders in political dialogue, the method of decision-making, the management of political dialogue, the signing of Union agreement and the implementation process, to be involved in the framework.
According to the terms of NCA, the framework must be created within 60 days after the signing of the NCA.

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