Monday, 10 March 2014

Kim Jong Un Wins In First Election: Dictator Wins In Unopposed Vote

                              One member one vote: Kim Jong-un casting a ballot at a polling station at the Kim Il-sung University of Politics in Pyongyang

Via Huffingpost:
With no one else on the ballot, state media reported Monday that supreme leader Kim Jong Un was not only elected to the highest legislative body in North Korea, he won with the unanimous approval of his district, which had 100 percent turnout.
North Koreans went to the polls on Sunday to approve the new roster of deputies for the Supreme People's Assembly, the country's legislature. The vote, more a political ritual than an election by Western standards, is generally held once every five years.

Though results for the other seats in the assembly had not yet been announced, North Korea's media quickly reported Kim had won in his district — located on the symbolic Mount Paekdu — without a single dissenting ballot.
Making their choice: North Koreans after casting their votes in the election of deputies to the 13th Supreme People's Assembly
Making their choice: North Koreans after casting their votes in the election of deputies to the 13th Supreme People's Assembly

In the previous elections, 687 deputies were chosen. This is first time the election had been held since Kim inherited power after the death of his father, Kim Jong Il, in 2011.
"This is an expression of all the service personnel and people's absolute support and profound trust in supreme leader Kim Jong Un as they single-mindedly remain loyal to him," the state-run Korean Central News Agency said.
In this propaganda image, North Korean soldiers dance after casting their votes in the election of deputies to the 13th Supreme People's Assembly at Paektusan Constituency
In this propaganda image, North Korean soldiers dance after casting their votes in the election of deputies to the 13th Supreme People's Assembly at Paektusan Constituency

Voters in the election have no choice who to vote for — there is only one candidate's name on the ballot for each district. Instead, they have the choice of voting yes or no, and according to official accounts virtually all choose yes. North Korea also typically puts turnout nationwide at over 99 percent.
Kim Yo-Jong (left), the younger sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un (right), arriving to cast their ballots
Kim Yo-Jong (left), the younger sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un (right), arriving to cast their ballots

Analysts will be closely watching to see if the deputies this time around reflect a generational change as Kim looks to solidify his power and replace older cadres with younger, more loyal ones.
The Supreme People's Assembly usually meets only rarely, often only once a year. In practice it has little power and when it is not in session, its work is done by a smaller and more powerful body called the Presidium.
The new parliament was expected to meet next month. No date has been officially announced.

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