Woman to charge NLD securityofcials ater alleged assault
A WOMAN plans to press chargesagainst National League or Democ-racy security guards who she saysassaulted her when she tried to givea complaint letter to Daw Aung SanSuu Kyi during the party leader’srecent visit to Pyin Oo Lwin.Ma Khine Wutyay Thanda Maungsaid she was hospitalised ollow-ing the incident on June 10, whichoccurred about midday in ront o Royal Rose garden in Inn Htite Oo village, where Daw Aung San SuuKyi was staying during her visit tothe ormer colonial hill station.Ma Khine Wutyay Thanda Maung wanted to inorm the party lead-er about her lawsuit against NLDPyithu Hluttaw representative orPyin Oo Lwin U Kyaw Thiha, whoshe says is the ather o her child.She has accused him o ailing to up-hold a promise to pay child supportand the case is currently beore thedistrict court. U Kyaw Thiha has ad-mitted to paying Ma Khine Wutyay Thanda Maung K400,000 compensa-tion about a decade ago but says theaccusations are abricated by peoplein the party who want to destroy hisreputation.“Daw Aung San Suu Kyi allowedthe public to ask ve questions dur-ing her public meeting on June 9 butI didn’t get the chance to ask a ques-tion so I went on June 10 to give hera complaint letter,” Ma Khine Wu-tyay Thanda Maung told
The Myan-mar Times
on June 12.“In the letter I made copies o thecourt documents and news reportsin journals [about U Kyaw Thiha’scase]. … But the security men physi-cally assaulted me in a way that hurtmy dignity,” she said.She said that she planned to presscharges against them in the comingdays.“I inormed the police shortly a-ter I was hit. Now I have dischargedmysel rom the hospital against theorders o the doctors because I am worried about my son,” she said. An ocial rom the party’s oceor Mandalay Region, who asked notto be named, said the conrontationshould never have occurred.“There’s no reason to assault a citizen like this, regardless o what-ever the personal issues behind theincident are. I eel sad that it hap-pened and legal action should betaken against those who physically assaulted [her]. We have to accepttruth,” he said. An ocial rom Wetwun policestation in Pyin Oo Lwin said onJune 12 they had been inormedabout the incident and were inves-tigating but a complaint had not yet been led.–
Translated by Zar Zar Soe
Ma Khine Wutyay Thanda Maung, who alleges she was assaulted by National Leaguefor Democracy security guards in Pyin Oo Lwin on June 10.
Photo: Si Thu Lwin
Associationbacks MTreporter overdeamationallegations
PHYO WAI KYAW
SI THU LWIN
THE Myanmar Journalists Asso-ciation has criticised governmentocials or ling a deamation suitagainst a senior reporter rom
The Myanmar Times
over coverage o a recent dispute in Mandalay Region’sMadaya township.The association’s Mandalay branch vowed to stand by the re-porter, Ko Si Thu Lwin, and help himght the legal action.Myanmar Consolidated Media,publisher o
The Myanmar Times
,stands by Ko Si Thu Lwin and thecontents o his article, a spokesper-son said.The company is ready to providelegal support i the court accepts thecharges ollowing the investigation,the spokesperson said.Madaya township electricity en-gineer U Nyan Htun submitted thecomplaint on May 29 on the basisthat an article by Ko Si Thu Lwinpublished in the paper’s May 24 My-anmar-language edition contained“some words that damaged the dig-nity o the electricity departmentand its staf”.Madaya Township Court onJune 12 sent the case back to policeto gather more evidence. The courtis expected to decide in late June whether there is enough evidence toaccept the charge.Journalists’ association chair-man or Mandalay Soe Bar Dine saidhe would lobby the government to withdraw the case i the charge isaccepted by the court.“I the issue proceeds any urther we will send a letter to the Minis-try o Electrical Power and othergovernment bodies. … The Madaya Township Court needs to decide rst whether there is a basis or chargesso the situation can change,” he saidon June 12.The article concerned a dispute inMadaya between residents and engi-neers over the route o new high-ten-sion power lines. Residents arguedthat the line should bypass the townrather than be run down the mainstreet or environmental and saety reasons. The dispute was resolvedin avour o the residents through a lucky draw, but the Mandalay Regionelectricity department has vowed topress ahead with its original plan. A second article was published inthe paper’s Myanmar edition on May 31 that included comments rom theregion-level engineer who is believedto have initiated the legal action.
(See related story page 23.)
“The articles did not includethe reporter’s opinion or view and just explained the public’s views onthe project. When a complaint wasreceived ater the rst article thereporter met again with the Man-dalay regional engineer and wrote a ollow-up article,” Soe Bar Dine said. Ater the complaint was led onMay 29 it was immediately trans-erred to the township court. Thecourt accepted the case and trans-erred it back to the police station toinvestigate.“I opened the case with the super- vision o the district electrical engi-neer. To continue the process, we willalso coordinate with the region anddistrict levels. I was sad when I readthe rst article,” Madaya townshipelectrical engineer U Nyan Htun saidon June 5.Senior reporter Si Thu Lwin saidhe only learned a complaint had been led when he read an articleabout it in the state-run
daily newspaper on June 3. “Whenthe ocial letter [about the charges]comes to me, I will do what I have todo to ght the charges,” he said.
‘I will do what I have to do to fght the charges.’
Si Thu Lwin
Senior reporter, The Myanmar Times
Electricity engineer in Madaya initiates legal actionagainst senior reporter or coverage o dispute
Ministry boosts research budget to US$5300
MEDICAL research unding in thegovernment budget has been in-creased tenold – but is still theequivalent o just US$5300 a year.Speaking at the 50
anniver-sary o the establishment o theDepartment o Medical Research(Lower Myanmar), Minister orHealth Dr Pe Thet Khin said theministry would use its K130 billion budget increase in 2013-14 to putmore money toward research atuniversities and hospitals.“In our country, students who doresearch are only masters-level anddoctorate students. Medical studentsseem to be unamiliar with research,”the minister said.Budget restrictions have pre- vented implementation o a ministry policy that medical universities mustconduct research, he added, but theincrease in research unding – romK500,000 to K5 million a year – willallow implementation.Under the ministry’s plan, re-search laboratories will be installedin medical universities and gov-ernment hospitals, and existinglaboratories upgraded.This will be o long-term benetto the medical industry, said Dr KhinSaw Aye, director o the Departmento Medical Research. “Most doctorshere are unamiliar with research, which plays an important role inmedical development,” she said.The health budget or the 2013-2014 nancial year is more thanK400 billion, which is 3.21 percent o the total budget and an almost 50pcrise on 2012-13.
YAMON PHU THIT
The increase in the health budget orthe 2013-14 fnancial year