In a further attempt to bypass the constitutional ban that prevents her from becoming president, Aung San Suu Kyi has drafted a bill that would make her “state counsellor” in the Myanmar government, a function similar to that of a Prime Minister. The bill was the first piece of legislation to go through the newly mounted Myanmar government, led by the National League for Democracy, Suu Kyi’s party, passing the upper house on Friday. It is expected to easily pass the lower house and be signed into law by the president, and makes explicit reference to the 70-year old Nobel Peace laureate herself.
The new function will place her at the head of four ministries: foreign affairs, president’s office, education and energy, as well as see her work with political parties and organizations, giving her power in both the executive and legislative branches. “The object of the proposal from the bill committee in the upper house parliament is to fulfil the wishes and interests of people who voted on 8 November 2015,” NLD lawmaker Aung Kyi Nyun told parliament. Despite her overwhelming victory in the elections, Suu Kyi herself can not become president because she has children with a foreign nationality, according to a constitutional clause drafted by the military in 2008 with her in mind. This bill is the latest move in her political battle with the military, who have already criticized it as “unconstitutional”.
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