Two Mon political parties have made tentative steps toward a possible merger, pledging after a meeting this week that they will continue to cooperate.
Representatives from the All Mon Region Democracy Party (AMDP) and the Mon National Party (MNP) held their first meeting on November 8, which both described as an initial foray into building ties preceding any official unification.
Nai Chit Oo, leader of the MNP’s delegation, said three points were agreed to at the meeting.
“The first point is to hold regular monthly meetings and an interim meeting if an emergency arises. The second point is to cooperate on political issues. The third is to discuss merging the two parties,” he said.
The AMRDP delegate said both parties discussed avoiding publicly criticizing each other or any other confrontations.
“Since we were able to reconcile, things will run more smoothly if our superiors and central committee members can meet. The party merger issue will be realized if the elders can meet. It won’t be difficult since we can now work together,” said Nai Maung Maung, leader of the AMRDP’s delegation.
The AMRDP extended an invitation for talks to the MNP on November 1. Each party sent three-members to the meeting.
Both parties have been hit with en mass resignations after members expressed dismay at the failure of Mon politicians to cooperate for the sake of the ethnic group. Having competing parties, they argued, just fracture the vote and would not serve the base well in the 2020 polls.
The AMRDP registered as a party in 2010 and currently has over 20,000 members. The party won one seat in the Mon State hluttaw in 2015.
The MNP holds two state hluttaw seats, one Amyotha Hluttaw seat and has more than 70,000 members.