Voters in Myanmar’s landmark election will be stumbling into a virtual aviary Sunday when they see their ballot papers. And the confusion is ruffling political feathers.
Nine of the contesting political parties are using a peacock as their logo, with most bearing a striking resemblance to that of the party headed by pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi. At least three other parties are using other birds.
This means every ballot will include many variations, some very slight, on Suu Kyi’s emblem, a “fighting peacock” flying toward a white star. All the avian logos are set against the same dark red background.
It’s a ploy, some think, to fool illiterate or rushed voters to accidentally pick another party instead of Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy. The NLD is widely expected to win big against the military-backed USDP. Nobody has imitated its logo, a single star on a field of green and red. Asked to point out the NLD symbol among a display of feathery logos, taxi driver Yangon Than Oo wasn’t sure.
“Is this the one with the star?” he asked uncertainly. NLD spokesman Nyan Win is not pleased. “As a lawyer, I want to say that these similarities are wrong,” he said in an interview.