Thus far, the Pyithu Hluttaw has received the most attention for its push to impeach the members of Myanmar’s Constitutional Tribunal. However, there is just as much support for impeachment in Amyotha Hluttaw. In a recent vote, 163 MPs supported impeachment while 53 did not. The vote split directly along civilian-military lines, with the 53 military MPs opposing the measure. According to The Myanmar Times, military MPs have actually taken the lead in defending the court:
“The ruling of the constitutional tribunal is final. Not following [the ruling] is the same as not following the constitution. It’s as if the legislature is trying to position itself above the judiciary,” Lt Col Zaw Moe said.
The votes in both Hluttaws have been open votes, meaning MPs must publicly stand up and state their position. However, according to The Myanmar Times, a few MPs in the Amyotha Hluttaw proposed using a secret ballot. Speaker Khin Aung Myint rejected the proposal. Nonetheless, the proposal itself is interesting in that it might indicate dissension within the ranks. It does seem a bit suspicious after all that all civilian MPs support impeachment. It might suggest that the speaker is putting pressure on backbenchers to vote for impeachment.
Finally, The Myanmar Times published another op-ed in which I was interviewed.