Auug San Sun Kyi, winner of the Burmese Nobel Peace Prize, Rafto Prize and Sathara Prize for Freedom of Thought, saw her party, the National League for Democracy (NLD) win the presidential election in a landslide victory last Sunday. The victory was on par with that of 1990, which saw its results annulled by the military, and brought more than two decades of military rule to an end. Already, leaders around the world have started congratulating Ms. Auug San Suu Kyi on her victory.
Barack Obama and United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon congratulated the former Burmese opposition leader and political prisoner on her landslide victory.
The White House deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes told reporters on Thursday that “this is in many ways a momentous opportunity for the people of Burma. We had been very focused on this election. It is a critical milestone in evaluating Burma’s democratic transition.”
This was a test the country successfully passed. Thein Sein, Burma’s president, has accepted the victory of the National Democratic League and has offered his congratulations.
On his Facebook page, his spokesperson wrote, “we will work peacefully in the transfer of power. Congratulations to the chairperson Auug San Suu Kyi and her party for gathering the support of the people.” Even the country’s commander-in-chief has sent his congratulations, thus signalling a new era in Burma.
Due to a change in the constitution in 2008 barring those who have a spouse or children who are foreign citizens from holding the presidential seat, Ms. Auug San Suu Kyi will not be able to become the president of the country. Not that this is a fact which phases the veteran opposition leader. She’d already mentioned that the NDL winning will place her “above the president.” In an interview with News Asia, the Singaporean television, she further explained her statement:
“I make all the decisions because I’m the leader of the winning party. And the president will be one whom we will choose just in order to meet the requirements of the constitution. He will have to understand this perfectly well that he will have no authority. That he will act in accordance with the positions of the party.”
So, not quite revenge for this student of Buddhism, but the perfect comeback for the Burmese Iron Lady who pushed the military junta aside where the political life of her country was concerned.