The Chin Youth Network (CYN) has urged the ethnic Chin community to vote for candidates from the Chin National League for Democracy (CNLD) in Burma’s upcoming general election, scheduled for November 8.
The CYN released its statement of endorsement on September 28.
Salai Mon Bio, a CYN central committee member, told Khonumthung News that his organization believes that the CNLD will better serve the Chin community.
“We haven’t gotten what we really wanted during the political transition in our country. What we want is to implement the promises of the Panglong Agreement, and to build a federal Union. We cannot implement those things,” Salai Mon Bio said, referring to the 1947 accord between the late Gen Aung San and some ethnic nationalities, promising equality in an independent Burma.
He said that “Bamar parties” such as the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) and the ruling National League for Democracy (NLD) have not delivered on these promises.
CYN’s statement described how laws implemented by these parties’ governments have marginalized ethnic communities, noting Burma’s land law, which, the organization said, does not sufficiently recognize customary land ownership practices common among the Chin people.
The statement also criticized ongoing human rights abuses in the country, and a lack of government aid for internally displaced people, the majority of whom belong to ethnic communities.
“Both the USDP and the NLD have already formed governments, but they didn’t implement what we wanted,” Salai Mon Bio explained. “We believe that the CNLD can do this. We are calling on people to vote for the CNLD. The CNLD represents the Chin people. We believe the CNLD can implement self-determination and the rights of the Chin people. That’s why we are asking for this.”
The CYN was formed in 2012 and works for ethnic Chin rights and youth rights.