The Myanmar parliament on Wednesday, March 28, elected U Win Myint as the new president of the country. The former speaker of the country's House of Representatives, Win Myint became the 10th incumbent succeeding U Htin Kyaw who stepped down a week earlier citing health reasons. First Vice President U Myint Swe served as the acting president in the interim period.
Win Myint won the election with a massive majority, securing 403 votes of 636. Myint Swe won 211 votes while Vice President Henry Van Thio got 18. Four members abstained from voting.
Sixty-six year old Win Myint is likely to be expected this week.
Win Myint was born in Danubyu on the western bank of the Irrawaddy River in Ayeyarwady Region in 1951 to Tun Kyin and Daw Than. He graduated with a geology degree from the University of Yangon and later studied law in the 1980s.
Win Myint became a court advocate in 1985 and was jailed for anti-government protests in 1988. He was released two years later and ran successfully in the election in Danubyu but the ruling military junta refused to acknowledge his success. He was jailed many times for his role in the opposition movement against the military junta.
The veteran leader faced the tragedy of his life when the military officers agreed to allow him to see his ailing son only if he renounced politics but he refused to do so. He returned to politics in 2012 during a local by-election and after he won the 2015 election as well, he was promoted as the speaker of the lower house. He served in that post before becoming the president.
Win Myint is known to be close to Aung san Suu Kyi
Win Myint, a long-serving member of National League for Democracy, is known to be close to State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and is respected for his decisive role as the speaker of the lower house of the Myanmarese parliament.
He has never compromised in maintaining discipline in the house even if that called for strict action against influential lawmakers. The man has also spoken in favour of farmers' rights and also ordered revelation of government officials' assets in 2012.
Win Myint's election as the president has received a positive feedback in Myanmar with people expecting him to carry out his duties in the new role with same intensity.