Thailand Day 7: U Chit Tin, NLD Member of Parliament

With almost everybody who works at the office already photographed either back in January or last weekend, the only person left to do was Ko Tate Naing, joint-secretary of AAPP. As luck would have it, not only was he in the office today but he was meeting with former political prisoner and National League for Democracy (NLD) Member of Parliament for Minhla, Magwe Division, U Chit Tin. It’s really quite extraordinary to find yourself standing there, chatting to an MP whilst writing on his hand. But I guess, that simple act sums up so much – the interest and belief in the project, but also acceptance of and trust in me and my involvement in the movement (so to speak). Somehow I can’t see myself standing next to Gordon Brown or Barrack Obama, chatting about life in Insein prison whilst writing the name of one of their colleagues, who is still detained there, on the palm of their hand. God knows I’d like to… and will do everything possible to do so. It brings a total sense of reality to the situation, but at the same time a complete sense of farce in that the junta have simply been allowed to get away with everything for so long. United Nations, you have so many unanswered questions.U Chit Tin, NLD MPU Chit Tin, was elected as a member of parliament for the NLD in the general election of 1990. He never took his seat. He was sentenced to 25 years in prison under ‘Section 122 (1)’ for being involved in the formation of a parallel government. He spent 2 years in Insein prison. The NLD won a resounding victory in the 1990 general election, winning over 80 percent of the Parliamentary seats. The military junta refused to honour the election results and instead started arresting NLD leaders and elected representatives throughout the country. The NLD caucus held a series of secret meetings and decided to send some of its MPs to the liberated areas to form a provisional government with it’s main task to help restore democracy and human rights in Burma. The National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma (NCGUB) was formed in Manerplaw on 18th December 1990.

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