Vice pres­i­dent is­sues farm­ers tem­po­rary land own­er­ship doc­u­ments

The Myanmar Times - - News - – Trans­la­tion by Zar Zar Soe KYAW KO KO kyawkoko@mm­

IN a first step to­ward sim­pli­fy­ing pro­ce­dures for re­claim­ing farm­land con­fis­cated un­der the for­mer regime, the gov­ern­ment has is­sued tem­po­rary doc­u­ments al­low­ing for­mer own­ers to take back their land.

The so-called Form 3 cer­tifi­cates were is­sued at a cer­e­mony on July 9 in Ma­daya town­ship, Man­dalay Re­gion, to al­low 32 for­mer own­ers to take back 208 acres (83 hectares) of land seized by the Min­istry of In­dus­try in 1978 at Yay Nant Thar vil­lage. The land was trans­ferred to the Min­istry of Health in 1990 to build a lep­rosy hos­pi­tal, but the orig­i­nal own­er­ship was not dis­puted.

A fur­ther 1100 acres are still un­der scru­tiny and will be re­turned later, ac­cord­ing to the re­gional farm­land man­age­ment and land records depart­ment.

Vice Pres­i­dent U Henry Van Thio told par­tic­i­pants in the cer­e­mony the land had been re­stored as part of a gov­ern­ment drive to sim­plify and speed up the process of restor­ing land seized by the for­mer regime to its right­ful own­ers.

“As ev­ery­one knows, it takes so long to deal with le­gal doc­u­ments be­cause we need to make sure of the facts. As State Coun­sel­lor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has said, we seek a fair so­lu­tion for land prob­lems. Our econ­omy is based on agri­cul­ture, so farm­ers are the lifeblood of the coun­try. There­fore, our gov­ern­ment con­sid­ers land prob­lems as our first pri­or­ity. We have now amended pro­ce­dures so as to re­duce the lengthy process of deal­ing with le­gal doc­u­ments,” said the vice pres­i­dent.

To re­solve wide­spread land-grab prob­lems, Pres­i­dent U Htin Kyaw es­tab­lished the Cen­tral Com­mit­tee for Re-scru­ti­n­is­ing Seized Farm­lands and Other Lands in May, and ap­pointed Vice Pres­i­dent Henry Van Thio as chair. Union min­is­ters and chief min­is­ters for re­gions and states are also mem­bers.

The vice pres­i­dent urged com­mit­tee mem­bers at the states and re­gions level to or­gan­ise train­ing work­shops to pro­mote knowl­edge of farm­land law and pro­ce­dures.

“We need to do this right in ac­cor­dance with the law and pro­ce­dures, as farm­land man­age­ment has a di­rect con­nec­tion with the pro­mo­tion of so­cioe­co­nomic de­vel­op­ment,” said the vice pres­i­dent, promis­ing a “sym­pa­thetic” at­ti­tude to­ward claimants.

Photo: Kyaw Ko Ko

Vice Pres­i­dent U Henry Van Thio (back­ground) pre­sides over a cer­e­mony pre­sent­ing tem­po­rary land use cer­tifi­cates to farm­ers in Ma­daya town­ship.

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