Suu Kyi party aims to print daily paper


YANGON–Aung San Suu Kyi’s opposition newspaper is among a host of Myanmar publications planning to print daily, the party said Tuesday, as authorities prepare to loosen their grip on the long-shackled media. State-owned newspapers are currently the only dailies allowed because of decades-long restrictions on private journals put in place by a previous junta regime that sought to stamp out any public dissent. “Newspapers are really important because they are the mirror of the people,” said Nyan Win, a spokesman for Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD). He said increased sales of the party’s D-Wave publication, which is currently produced weekly and chiefly focuses on the activities of the NLD and its Nobel laureate leader, will help raise funds. D-Wave is one of 16 titles approved to become a daily under new rules set to come into effect on April 1, the state-owned New Light of Myanmar reported Tuesday. Myanmar’s press is in the throes of a dramatic transformation, with a host of new freedoms under a quasi-civilian regime that replaced military rule in 2011. Pre-publication censorship, previously applied to everything from newspapers to song lyrics and even fairy tales, was lifted last year.

Reporting on Suu Kyi and her party — both now accepted in the country’s parliament — is no longer treated as a dangerous taboo, while criticism of the authorities has become a mainstay of the private press. Win Tin, a senior NLD member and D-Wave advisor, said the party had not decided whether to expand editorial coverage to include general news, but that it was planning to boost revenues by including advertisements. “We have many party members to buy and read our daily newspapers,” he told AFP. But he added that it would not be possible to increase the frequency that D-Wave is printed before July because of the increased costs involved and the need to train an editorial team.