The Sound Kitchen

Aung San Suu Kyi and other brave women – US!

Audio 12:13
David Franklin/Getty Images/A Terrade

This week on The Sound Kitchen, you’ll hear the answer to the question about Aung San Suu Kyi. We wonderful women are honoured, there’s your letters, some great music - and of course, the new quiz question. So click on that little “Listen” arrow above and join in!


Hello everyone!

Welcome to The Sound Kitchen. You can catch the programme on-the-air every Saturday at 6:15, 7:15, 14:45 and 16:45 universal time. You’ll hear the winner’s names announced and the week’s quiz question, along with all the other ingredients you have grown accustomed to: your letters and essays, “On This Day”, quirky facts and news, interviews, and great music … so be sure and tune in every Saturday.

Great news my friends … there are three brand new official RFI clubs to welcome! There’s the “RFI Fans Web Visitors Club” in Khanpur, Pakistan, headed up by Amir Manzoor. Welcome! There’s the “Cubans on the Radio Club” in Holguin, Cuba, with Rommel Tamayo Gutiérrez as its president – Bienvenidos! And there’s the “RFI Surfer’s Society Bangladesh” in Dhaka, Bangladesh, with Ms Royeka Khatun at the helm – welcome! Welcome, welcome, welcome!

More great news - we have a new feature … a literary magazine produced once a month by Laura Angela Bagnetto, called Africa: Stories in the 54. Look for it here on our website, and also on The Sound Kitchen Facebook page.

Hang on! There's even more great news! We have a shortwave frequency again! It’s 9675 kHz on the 31m band, and you can hear us between 6.00 and 7.00 UT every day. We’ve had reception reports from Algeria, Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China, Cuba, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Russia, Sierra Leone, Sweden, the United Arab Emirates, the UK and the US, and although the frequency is “aimed” (or however that works) towards the African continent, give it a try. You never know … and be sure and send us your reception reports. Maybe we can get more time, which would be wonderful.

You can also look for our programs on WRMI ( and WRN ( In Paris, you can hear us on World Radio Paris ( on DAB+. These broadcasters diffuse our programs out of the goodness of their hearts (and thank you thank you thank you WRMI, WRN, and World Radio Paris!), but unless you tell us how you heard us, we have no way of knowing … so do write and tell us how you listen to us.

This week’s quiz: On 6 February, I asked you a question about Myanmar (Burma) where the first freely elected parliament in 50 years held its opening session. The National League for Democracy (NLD), led by Aung San Suu Kyi – the woman who spent 15 years under house arrest under the former military government – won 80 per cent of the seats in last November’s parliamentary elections.

The new parliament must choose a new president, but it cannot be Aung San Suu Kyi … why? You were to write in with the reason why Aung San Suu Kyi cannot be president of Myanmar.

The answer is: A clause in the country’s constitution says anyone with a spouse or whose children hold foreign passports cannot be president. Suu Kyi’s sons hold foreign passports; they are British citizens. Myanmar's military junta revoked their citizenship when Suu Kyi became involved in opposition politics.

Here’s a brief update on what is going on in Myanmar: this past Thursday, Suu Kyi’s party nominated Htin Kyaw as its lower house candidate for president. Because the party has an overwhelming parliamentary majority, that makes him near-certain to become president.

In Myanmar the president is elected by the Parliament. Three presidential candidates are nominated: one by the lower house, one by the upper house, and one by the military bloc in parliament, who under the constitution hold a quarter of seats in both houses.

Then both houses vote in a joint session, with the winner elected president and the two losing nominees becoming vice presidents.

Because the NLD has a comfortable majority in both the lower and the upper house of Parliament, it effectively controls two of the nominations.

The NLD nominated Henry Vantriu, a member of the Chin ethnic group from Chin state in the country's northwest – which borders India and Bangladesh - as its candidate from the upper house. This is in line with Suu Kyi’s goal of forming a government for national reconciliation. She hopes to end conflict between state forces and numerous armed ethnic groups in the country.

The winners this week are: Andrew Omondi Makoha from Mombasa, Kenya; Maharjan Dangol from Kathmandu, Nepal; Shahanaj Parvin from Rangpur, Bangladesh and RFI Listeners Club members Bina Rani Mondal of Murshidabad, India and Iris Cassell from Banjul, The Gambia.

Congratulations winners!

This week’s question ... you'll have to listen to the show to participate. You have until 2 May to enter this week's quiz. The winners will be announced on the 7 May program. When you enter, be sure you send your postal address in with your answer, and if you have one, your RFI Listeners Club membership number.

Send your answers to:


Susan Owensby
RFI – The Sound Kitchen
80, rue Camille Desmoulins
92130 Issy-les-Moulineaux


By text … You can also send your quiz answers to The Sound Kitchen mobile phone. Dial your country’s international access code, or “ + ”, then 33 6 31 12 96 82. Don’t forget to include your mailing address in your text – and if you have one, your RFI Listeners Club membership number.



To find out how you can win an RFI wireless computer mouse, click here:

To find out how you can become a member of the RFI Listeners Club, or to form your own official RFI Club, click here:




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