Myanmar’s parliament appoints new president following incumbents resignation

Myanmar’s parliament appoints new president following incumbents resignation

Myanmar’s parliament will name their new president today following the resignation of 71-year-old U Htin Kyaw, the country’s first civilian-elected

Myanmar’s new president Htin Kyaw (L) and National League for Democracy party leader Aung San Suu Kyi arrives to parliament in Naypyitaw

Photo: Reuters

Myanmar’s parliament will name their new president today following the resignation of 71-year-old U Htin Kyaw, the country’s first civilian-elected head of state and government in over 50 years. His likely replacement is former Speaker of the House of Representatives U Win Myint, a close colleague of State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, leader of the National League for Democracy (NLD).

Myanmar has drawn international attention for two main reasons: the prison release and fair election of Suu Kyi, symbolising strengthening democracy, and the ongoing Rohingya humanitarian crisis that put into question the parity of the NLD’s platform and leadership in light of military violence against the Muslim minority.

Though constitutionally barred from assuming the presidency, Suu Kyi informally wields the most political power in the country. But, she has been scrutinised for her failure to follow through on promises of economic and social reform, suggesting that she does not appropriately allocate state responsibilities. A new, slightly younger president could refresh Myanmarese politics from a relative standstill; however, because the replacement is likely to be an internal NLD candidate, do not expect much movement at all, especially in regards to the Rohingya.