(Ann, 22 May 2013): Rakhine National Development Party (RNDP), an influential political party will hold its annual central committee meeting at Ann, a town in Arakan State, where the government backed Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) enjoys political monopoly.
Initially the RNDP had a plan to hold its central committee meeting in Kyauk Pru, second largest city of Arakan State but later it was shifted to Ann, where the meeting is now scheduled for 27 May to 29 May.
“Kyauk Pru is our area where most of the people strongly support our party. We had won all seats in Kyauk Pru township in 2010 election. But Ann is different from Kyauk Pru. So we have shifted our central committee meeting to Ann with an aim to mobilize more people there in favour of RNDP,” said a party leader.
Mentionable is that the RNDP won 34 Parliamentary seats in Arakan State in 2010 election. It even defeated the resourceful USDP in Ann township.
Ann, which is centrally located in Arakan State, now becomes a cantonment area after the Western Command Headquarter was moved from Sittwe to the town. Many Army battalions including the artillery have stationed in the locality. Lt General Thein Swe, a former minister in the SPDC military regime, had won from Ann constituency for the lower Parliament seat in 2010 election.
The RNDP may put its eyes on Ann for the 2015 general election, claimed a political analyst based in Sittwe adding that ‘RNDP’s decision to hold central committee meeting at Ann may be en exercise for popularizing the party there’.