Arakan parliament investigates problems of village-administrator posts across the region

Maung Rammar

Rathidaung: The Arakan State Parliament has dispatched a team of its representatives to investigate the problems surrounding the election of ward or village-tract administrator posts across the region, according to its lawmakers.

Bangladesh Burma

U Hla Maung Thein, an MP of Rathidaung Township in Arakan State, told Narinjara that the parliament formed it’s investigation team in its fifth regular session that was convened from 10th to 29th of December 2012 after it received many complaint letters about election fraud for the posts in the region.

“The parliamentary team is now carrying out investigations concerning the complaints about the election fraud for the posts of ward or village-tract administrator in our region”, said U Hla Maung Thein.

He said the team that includes military representatives has been travelling to the wards and villages in Kyauktaw, Mrauk-U, Pauktaw, Rathedaung, Buthidaung and Maungdaw Townships in northern Arakan State for its investigation after dividing itself into three smaller teams.

The selected administrators are said to be unable to take over their positions in several wards and village-tracts in those townships due to the complaints of local residents.

According to article 289 of the Burma’s 2008 constitution, “Administration of ward or village-tract shall be assigned in accordance with the law to a person whose integrity is respected by the community”.

U Hla Maung Thein said most of the complaints filed by the local residents are that the township authorities have handpicked the candidates for the posts of their ward or village-tract administrators according to their own will without regarding the constitution.

He said there are also cases that the candidates themselves have complained about to each other.

“I think it is good the parliament is conducted investigations because the village-level administration is also very important for our people”, said U Hla Maung Thein.

According to the local residents, they do not like their ward or village administrators to be directly appointed by the higher authorities because they have suffered from the abuses perpetrated by their former administrators who were directly appointed by the authorities during the reign of former military regime.

The team is said to continue its investigations in Minbya, Mraybon, Kyaukphyu, Rambree, Manaung, Taungup, Thandwe and Gwa Townships as well.