By Kimana Zulueta-Fülscher.
Since independence from Great Britain, Myanmar/Burma has had three different constitutions. The first was signed immediately after independence in 1947, following the “Panglong Agreement” between the Burmese government and three different ethnic groups, the Shan, the Kachin and the Chin. It also aimed to enhance the autonomy of the so-called frontier or ethnic areas vis-à-vis the central government. After the 1962 military coup, two other constitutions entered into force in 1974 and in 2008, respectively. Both of these constitutions were decreed by the Myanmar armed forces, though affirmed in nationwide referendums. The 1974 Constitution was based on the “Burmese Way to Socialism,” and the 2008 Constitution was based on the armed forces’ 2003 “Seven Step Roadmap to Disciplined Democracy.” […]