Donors asked to come for­ward to help foot cost of post-quake re­pairs

The Myanmar Times - - News - MAUNG ZAW maungzaw@mm­times.com

DONORS will­ing to fund the re­pair of more than 200 pago­das in Ba­gan dam­aged by last Au­gust’s earth­quake are still be­ing iden­ti­fied, of­fi­cials say. U Aung Kaw, di­rec­tor of the Depart­ment of Ar­chae­ol­ogy, Na­tional Mu­seum and Li­brary in Ba­gan, called on donors who have funded the up­keep of the an­cient re­li­gious build­ings to come for­ward by De­cem­ber 15.

The gov­ern­ment is ask­ing them to con­trib­ute to­ward the re­pair of build­ings cat­e­gorised as third pri­or­ity. More se­ri­ously dam­aged build­ings will be re­paired on a more ur­gent ba­sis.

“We will be­gin the restora­tion of more than 200 of the Ba­gan pago­das dam­aged by the earth­quake soon. We’ve been wait­ing for the orig­i­nal donors of those pago­das to come for­ward, and we in­vite them to do so by De­cem­ber 15 if they want to con­trib­ute to the cost of re­pairs,” he said.

A to­tal of 224 pago­das were classed as third pri­or­ity, whose re­pair would be en­trusted to pri­vate donors.

“The orig­i­nal donors gave their names to be listed at the Of­fice of Ar­chae­ol­ogy in Ba­gan. Some gave their names at the Nyaung-U dis­trict ad­min­is­tra­tive of­fice, and some at the Depart­ment of Ar­chae­ol­ogy in Nay Pyi Taw. We don’t yet have a con­sol­i­dated list,” he said. “We’ll es­tab­lish how many donors there are by mid-De­cem­ber, and seek ad­di­tional fund­ing from other donors to pay for the re­pair of the other pago­das.”

The depart­ment has listed 36 pago­das as the most heav­ily dam­aged, af­ter the pow­er­ful 6.8-mag­ni­tude quake. Another 53 have been des­ig­nated as sec­ond pri­or­ity for re­pairs. Of the re­main­ing 300 that suf­fered dam­age, 224 pago­das have been sup­ported by donors.

Nyaung-U res­i­dent U Thaung Hlaing said, “I hope they can do the re­pairs quickly, and with­out mak­ing the kinds of mis­takes they made be­fore. It makes me sad to see the pago­das dam­aged.”

– Trans­la­tion by Win Thaw Tar

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