Man­dalay chief min­is­ter warns civil ser­vants against cor­rup­tion

The Myanmar Times - - News - SI THU LWIN sithul­win@mm­

IN the wake of a Pyin Oo Lwin bribery scan­dal, Man­dalay’s chief min­is­ter pleaded with the re­gion’s pub­lic ser­vants to stamp out cor­rup­tion in their ranks and put the peo­ple they serve first.

In a meet­ing held at the re­gional govern­ment’s of­fices last week, Chief Min­is­ter U Zaw Myint Maung spoke of the govern­ment’s ob­jec­tives and his own hopes for the re­gion’s civil ser­vants.

“I do not want the gen­eral ad­min­is­tra­tive staff to be stained with the taint of cor­rup­tion while I am chief min­is­ter. I recog­nise that not ev­ery­one is per­fect and if mis­takes have been made it is im­por­tant to cor­rect them. We have promised to be a govern­ment free from cor­rup­tion,” he said.

He ad­dressed his mes­sage to civil ser­vants at all lev­els and ar­eas of govern­ment, not just the staff of the gen­eral ad­min­is­tra­tion who are di­rectly ac­count­able to him.

“I say this to ev­ery­one who serves the pub­lic, in­clud­ing to mem­bers of the govern­ment ... I want you to fo­cus on the pub­lic you serve and sup­port their needs,” said U Zaw Myint Maung.

The chief min­is­ter specif­i­cally men­tioned the prac­tice of re­fus­ing to carry out cer­tain tasks with­out ex­tra “tea money” pay­ment and caus­ing un­nec­es­sary de­lays as ex­am­ples of the type of be­hav­iour to be stamped out.

He warned against con­flicts of in­ter­est con­cern­ing the pre­vi­ous govern­ment and urged staff to be loyal to the cur­rent govern­ment.

The chief min­is­ter’s state­ments come in the wake of charges be­ing filed ear­lier this month against two of­fi­cials from the Pyin Oo Lwin town­ship ad­min­is­tra­tion of­fice by the anti-bribery com­mis­sion.

The two of­fi­cials, who are ac­cused of ac­cept­ing bribes in re­la­tion to a land dis­pute in Ma Kyee Inn village, are cur­rently await­ing trial according to U Myint Soe, a rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Man­dalay’s High Court. As­sis­tant di­rec­tor U Tin Naing Soe is al­leged to have re­ceived K550,000 in cash and gifts, while deputy ad­min­is­tra­tor U Kyaw Kyaw Naing is sus­pected of re­ceiv­ing a to­tal of K12.5 mil­lion in bribes on three sep­a­rate oc­ca­sions in 2015.

In April, State Coun­sel­lor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi placed a K25,000 cap on the value of in­di­vid­ual gifts civil ser­vants are al­lowed to ac­cept, with K100,000 es­tab­lished as the yearly limit for gifts from an or­gan­i­sa­tion or in­di­vid­u­als. The limit was K300,000 un­der U Thein Sein’s ad­min­is­tra­tion. Diplo­mats and staff in the for­eign min­istry have a sep­a­rate set of lim­its and ex­emp­tions.

Transparency In­ter­na­tional placed Myan­mar 147th out of 168 na­tions in the 2015 Cor­rup­tion Per­cep­tions In­dex, rank­ing it along­side Chad and the Demo­cratic Re­pub­lic of the Congo. – Trans­la­tion by San Lay

and Khine Thazin Han

Photo: Si Thu Lwin

Man­dalay Chief Min­is­ter U Zaw Myint Maung ap­pealed to civil ser­vants to stop cor­rup­tion on Novem­ber 17.

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