Local Officer’s Statements on Former Home Minister’s Recent Visit

U Maung Oo, who was serving as the home minister and the commander of western command under the former SPDC regime, has recently visited Kyaukpru, the port town in western Burma’s Arakan State, for the first time after being appointed as the regional in-charge for the state by the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) that runs the present regime in the country. During his one-day visit to the town, he called on the local departmental officials as well as his party’s members and townspeople. Narinjara got the chance to interview a senior local departmental officer who attended the meeting with him as presented below:

Q: Could you please tell us about the meeting with him?

A: Yes, he visited in our town on 26 June 2011 and held a meeting with the senior local officials at 1pm in the Rammarwaddy Hall in the town. He was also accompanied by U Kyaw Khin, the representative of the state parliament from Ramere Township from his party.

Q: What did he discuss with the officials in the meeting?

A: He especially asked us questions on why his party, the USDP, had lost in the last election and he ordered that we must ensure all votes from us and from our staffs for the party in the coming election.

Q: What else has he ordered of the officials?

A: He told us that we, all the senior and junior officials, must have relations with no party except the USDP and he asked us if there was any official of ethnic Rakhine among us and made us raise our forefinger if we were Rakhine in the meeting.

Q: Why has he done so just for the Rakhine ethnic among the officials?

A: I did not know why did so in the meeting, but I thought he asked that question just for insulting the officials on their own ethnic background. And he also told us that ethnic Shan and Rakhine are the worst among the ethnic peoples because the majorities of those peoples had voted for their own ethnic candidates in the last election.

Q: Is there anything more he talked about regarding the ethnic peoples?

A: No, but he told us that if we need school or factory or road then go to the Rakhine party that has won most of the seats in the election.

Q: Has he done anything more except meeting the officials during his visit to Kyaukphru?

A: Yes, he visited the Nagar Monastery around 3 pm and asked the abbot of the monastery about his party’s election loss in the area and the abbot answered his question, saying that his party lost the election due to the disqualified candidates represented by the party. After visiting the monastery, he held meeting with the town elders around 4 pm at the district general administration office and he raised the same question to the elders, and they gave the similar answer back to him like the abbot did.