Third regular session of first Amyotha Hluttaw continues for fourth day
15 February 2012
Third regular session of first Amyotha Hluttaw continued for the fourth day at Amyotha Hluttaw Hall of Hluttaw Complex here at 10 am today.
The session was attended by Speaker of Amyotha Hluttaw U Khin Aung Myint and 201 Amyotha Hluttaw representatives.
The Hluttaw approved supplement to level monthly emolument of financial and legal commission with that of Hluttaw representatives.
The Speaker announced that 41 books donated by U Pe Myint will be kept in U Pe Myint Corner of Amyotha Hluttaw Library and the Amyotha Hluttaw recorded the donation.
U Nyan Lin of Ayeyawady Region Constituency (3) raised the question about “progress in negotiations with ethnic armed groups for peace till now”. Leader of Union-level peace-making group Union Minister for Rail Transportation U Aung Min answered: The President said, regarding national races affairs, national unity is top priority and the government always keeps the door open for peace in his first address to Pyidaungsu Hluttaw on 30-3-2011.
The Union government of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar issued Notification No (1/2011), inviting armed groups for ending armed conflicts in the country, making peace and implementing development tasks around the country hand in hand with the government and the entire people. The President assigned a 10-member Union-level peace-making group to hold peace talks with RCSS/SSA, KNPP, CNF, and NMSP armed groups on 24-11-2011.
The President gave three-step guideline for building eternal peace that is to discuss at the state level, at the Union level and before Pyidaungsu Hluttaw by all the national races to sign an eternal peace agreement.
After four meetings with Kayin national armed group KNU, Union-level agreement in principle was singed. After three meetings with Shan national armed group RCSS/SSA, Union-level agreement was inked. After two meetings with Chin national armed group CNF, State-level ceasefire agreement was signed. After two meetings with Mon national armed group NMSP, State-level agreement was signed. The Union-level peace-making group met twice with Kayah national armed group KNPP and PaO national armed group PNLO respectively. Among 11 national races armed group in UNFC, the peace-making group has contacts with two small groupsNational Unity Party (Arakan) and Lahu Democratic Union.
Leader of Union-level peace-making group U Aung Thaung said: The President assigned a group with Pyithu Hluttaw Representative U Aung Thaung of Taungtha Township as the leader and Pyithu Hluttaw Representative U Thein Zaw of Myitkyina Township as the deputy leader to discuss peace at Union-level.
Armed groups were invited to discuss peace on 18-8-2011 as it was found the government, the people and the entire ethnic armed groups to establish peace as required by the country. After three meetings with “Wa” Special Region (2) peace-making group, Union-level peace agreement was signed. After three meetings with Special Region (4) peace-making group, Unionlevel peace agreement was signed.
After two meetings with Kalo Htoo Baw squad (former DKBA) peace-making group, Union-level peace agreement was signed. Negotiations with KIO/KIA and SSPP/SSA are under way.
After peace meetings around the country are accomplished, the final historical peace agreement will be signed with armed groups, other national races leaders and other appropriate persons before the Speaker of the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw and Hluttaw representatives.
Deputy Minister for Agriculture and Irrigation U Ohn Than answered five questions raised by five Hluttaw representatives.
U Hmat Gyi of Mandalay Region Constituency (9) asked “whether there is plan to reserve and distribute paddy strains to inundated plantations”. The deputy minister answered: There are three means to address the issue: to reserve paddy strains suited with the region in advance, to grow reserve plantation in highland farms and to grow plants of the same age from farms which are not inundated immediately.
By reserving paddy strains, strains suited with the region are available, high cost for transportation will be reduced and systematic storage of reserve paddy strains help recover quickly.
Region/State agricultural ministers need to be aware of weather conditions of their own Region or State.
U Htay Maung of Mandalay Region Constituency (12) asked “whether there is plan to repair No (6) (North) feeder canal of Nyaungyan-Minhla Lake in Thazi Township”. The deputy minister answered: The original irrigation area of the lake through seven canals was 27205 acres. It could irrigate the area sufficiently in years of higher rainfall.
The said canal has the length of 11225 ft and the width of five feet. If the rainfall is lower, it has difficulties to irrigate farmlands at the edge of its irrigation area.
It was repaired in 2004-2005 fiscal year by machinery. Although it was damaged by heavy rain in 2011, the Irrigation Department is repairing and managing to irrigate farmlands sufficiently. The repair will be completed by February, 2012.
Dr Myint Kyi of Yangon Region Constituency (8) asked “whether there is plan to help farmers obtain hybrid seed for producing hybrid rice”. The deputy minister answered: The Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation is making test production of four kinds of hybrid seed in cooperation with China, the Philippines, Vietnam and India. In this monsoon, China and Myanmar agriculturalists are carrying out test productions of hybrid seeds in 200-acre farmlands of Shwetaung farm in Wundwin Township in Mandalay Region and Yezin University of Agriculture. Private companies are doing the same in 550-acre farmlands in Yangon Region.
While educating farmers to abide by Good Agriculture Practice (GAP), the ministry is targeting to yield 20-30 baskets of paddy strains per acre. China started applying hybrid paddy technology for food sufficiency as of 1974 and put 60 per cent of farms under hybrid paddy.
Innovation of experts in respective fields contributes much to improvement of technological experiences, and quality of rice gets better market.
Thanks to innovation of Chinese agriculturalists from International Rice Research Institutes-IRRI from People’s Republic of China and the Philippines, hybrid paddy produce higher rate of per-acre yield than that of existing paddy strains and better quality for enabling the farmers to earn income through cost effective status. Thus, the rice exporter countries including India are producing hybrid paddy. Entrepreneurs of national entrepreneurs from respective states and regions can produce and distribute hybrid paddy seeds in the respective regions by joining hands with skillful technicians. He invited the Hluttaw representatives to visit modern hybrid paddy seed production farms that can double the income of farmers.
With regard to the proposal for farmers of Maubin and Nyaungdon townships to enjoy full rights of farming works asked by U Thet Lin of Ayeyawady Region Constituency No. 8, the deputy minister replied that the farmland law compilation commission was formed with 14 members chaired by the Union Minister for Agriculture and Irrigation under Announcement issued on No. 44/2011 on 19-10-2011 by the Union government.
The provisions at Section 23 (a), Sections 29, 248 (a) and 249 of the 2008 Constitution of the Union of Myanmar were exactly prescribed on political system and economic system of the State, basis of farmland, rights of farmers, transform of manual farming to mechanized farming and matters related to region or state government.
The region/state government will solve the problems for enabling the local farmers to enjoy rights of farming works. A total of 14 company entrepreneurs attained 69502 acres of land in Nyaungdon and Maubin townships of Ayeyawady Region. Of them, 61157 acres of farmlands have been reclaimed and there remains to reclaim 8345 acres of land. Among the reclaimed lands, a total of 33354 acres of land are put under agriculture and livestock breeding works.
Thus, there remains 27803 acres of land to be used in agriculture and livestock breeding. The State leaders assigned duties to company entrepreneurs to reclaim the vacant and wetlands to become farmlands in Ayeyawady Region. The entrepreneurs took risks for creating of job opportunities in rural areas and regional development though they do not have economical cost effectiveness in their farming works. Due to effective undertaking of farming works, the aim of entrepreneurs can be realized to develop the region. The Vacant, Fallow and Virgin Lands Management Law will be promulgated soon, so the problems can be solved effectively under the law.
Dr Myat Nyana Soe of Yangon Region Constituency No. 4 asked whether there is a plan to reclaim more and more farmlands to contribute towards enhancement of mechanized farming for improvement of social economic life of farmers, the deputy minister replied that as educative activities are being undertaken for reclamation of mechanized farms so as to boost crop production, hectare plots and acre plots of mechanized farms facilitated with production roads, feeder canals and drains are being reclaimed as model plots in Dekkhinathiri, Pobbathiri, Ottarathiri and Zabuthiri townships of Nay Pyi Taw Council Area, Shwedaung Farm in Wundwin Township of Mandalay Region in upper Myanmar, Mechanized Farming Special Zone-1 and Zone 2 in Dagon Myothit (East) and (Seikkan) townships in lower Myanmar.
At present, farmers and officials from various regions are invited to visit the farms. AAE Co joined the mechanized farming process in Nay Pyi Taw Council Area with investment of heavy machinery worth US$ 20 million. It is necessary to come out cooperation of private sector in respective regions of the whole nation.
A plan is underway to grant reclamation of 500 acres each of educative mechanized farms in Yangon, Bago, Mandalay, Magway and Ayeyawady regions and Nay Pyi Taw, 200 acres in Mon State, 50 acres each in Taninthayi Region, Rakhine, Shan (South) and (North) states and 25 acres each in Kachin, Kayah, Kayin and Shan State (East).
The ministry will provide necessary technological and machinery assistance to them.
Union Minister for Home Affairs Lt-Gen Ko Ko replied to questions on home affairs sector raised by three Hluttaw representatives.
U Ye Myint of Bago Region Constituency No. 4 asked a proposal to effectively supervise transport and distribution of explosive fireworks, and the Union minister replied that businessmen import and trade fireworks. Likewise, above-ground and underground destructionists may transport and explode the gunpowder and other explosive materials. Thus, regional orders have been issued officially. Moreover, warnings and orders were issued to take action against those who store and sell fireworks at festivities in the months of Thadingyut and Tazaungmone through dailies, radio and TV before the festivals.
Action was taken against the offenders with six-month imprisonment under Section 188 of the Criminal Law, 7-year imprisonment under Section 285/286 and 10-year imprisonment under Section 3 of the 1908 Explosive Objects Act. Action was taken against 74 persons in 67 cases from 1- 4-2011 to 31-12-2011 in regions and states, and 93172 packets of fire crackers, 677 packets of gunpowder and 43124 pieces of fireworks worth K 5263950 were seized.
Those who illegally carrying fireworks including bombs and explosive materials are being searched at border checkpoints and action is being taken against them. He invited the people to join hands with the government conscientiously.
U Tin Maung Win of Mandalay Region Constituency No. 3 asked as authorized personnel are committing bribery and malpractice of authority whether there is a plan to combat the said behaviors. The Union minister replied that emphasis is being placed on eradication of bribery and corruption cases among departmental personnel, and deterrent action is being taken against the offenders. Moreover, respective ministries announced the telephone numbers for complaints against the bribery and corruption cases of departmental personnel.
Penalties were prescribed in provisions of sections 161, 162, 163, 164 and 165 of the Chapter IX of the 1861 Penal Code and section 3 of the Suppression of Corruption Act 1948.
In accord with the announcement No. 13/2007 of the government of the Union of Myanmar dated 18 July 2007, 10 types of crimes including corruption were prescribed as criminal cases of money laundering by exercising the authority under Section 5, subsection (a) and subparagraph (10) of Control of Money Laundering Law 2002.
Myanmar signed the United Nations Convention Against Corruption on 2 December 2005. The enquiry courts are formed by the ministries for respective cases in the executive sector of the State.
To clear out bribery and corruption cases, service personnel are being assisted with welfare tasks. The people on their part are to exactly abide by the existing laws in eradicating the bribery cases.
U Mya Ohn of Kachin State Constituency No. 8 asked whether there is a plan to designate Phakant Township of Kachin State as drug free zone. The Union Minister replied that the Central Committee for Drug Abuse Control formed in 1976 is taking preventive measures against danger of narcotic drugs in the entire nation. The 15-year drug elimination plan was adopted to decline poppy cultivation and production from 1999-2000 to 2013-2014.
Myitkyina Special Anti-Drug Squad and Bhamo Special Anti-Drug Squad are discharging duty of drug elimination in Kachin State. Likewise, Seikmu anti-drug mobile group, Mawwam anti-drug mobile group and Tamakhan anti-drug mobile group are taking out narcotic drug preventive tasks in Phakant Township.
INGOs give talks on narcotic drugs and provide treatment in Tanai and Phakant townships. NGOs, INGOs and UNOD are joining hands in rehabilitating the drug addicts. Due to easy earning of incomes in various jobs, jade mines and gold mines in Phakant Township has larger density of population and increasing number of drug users. Thus, narcotic drug eradication tasks are being added with momentum there. In Phakant Township, a total of 275 male culprits and 48 female culprits were arrested in 238 cases of heroin, raw opium, opium oil, stimulant tablets and opium related cases in 2011.
Rewards and certificates of honour were presented to outstanding State service personnel and people for their performance in narcotic drug prevention tasks and staff were promoted their ranks. Likewise, the personnel related to the drug cases were taken in deterrent action. Single person, national race, organization and country cannot take drug preventive measures. Under the leadership of the State, all the people are to participate in the drug preventive tasks joining hands with the international community to designate the drug free zone.
U Sai Kyaw Zaw Than of Shan State Constituency No. 2 asked whether there is a plan to allot adequate fund for maintenance of artifacts and whether there is a plan to re-display royal equipment of successive Nyaungshwe Saophas. Deputy Minister for Culture Daw Sanda Khin replied that the Department of Archaeology, National Museum and Library opens cultural museums and archaeological museums in regions and states and demands the annual funds for maintenance of the ancient cultural objects. Based on values and damages of the artifacts, the funds were allotted for maintenance.
Artistic works like paintings and sculptures are being renovated asking the craftsmen. Craftsmen from Mandalay were sent to Nyaungshwe Museum to repair mosaics and floral sculptures and clean paintings out of the antique and furniture of the museum. Renovation cost was granted in this fiscal year.
Nyaungshwe Palace now opened as Buddhism Museum was opened to the public as Nyaungshwe Palace Archaeological Museum from 1964 in the time of the Revolutionary Council to 1999, Shan Chieftains Museum from 2000 to 2005 and costumes; items, furniture, paintings and documentary photos of Shan chieftains were exhibited. It was opened as Nyaungshwe Cultural Museum beginning 3 March 2005 and then as Buddhism Museum from 8 July, 2007 till now. Now with Inlay becoming major tourist attraction, plans are underway to reopen the museum as Cultural Museum, Nyaungshwe with the exhibition of all the items previously on display in order that globetrotters can learn the history and culture of Nyaungshwe more widely. It will be repaired during 2012-2013 fiscal year and upon completion documents, royal items of successive Shan chieftains and costumes, tradition and cultural items of the nationals of Nyaungshwe region and religious items currently on display will be exhibited in the same fiscal year.
Next, the Amyotha Hluttaw Speaker informed that the Pyithu Hluttaw has made amendments to Vacant, Fellow and Virgin Land Management Bill ratified by the Amyotha Hluttaw and sent it back to the Amyotha Hluttaw and asked the MPs to enlist if they wish to make discussion.
U Khin Maung Yi of Ayeyawady Region Constituency No (6), U Soe Myint of Bago Region Constituency No (6) and Dr Myat Nyana Soe of Yangon Region Constituency No (4) discussed the amendments to Environment Conservation Bill made by the Pyithu Hluttaw and the Amyotha Hluttaw decided to ask its bill committee to reconsider the discussions.
U Win Naung of Yangon Region Constituency No (5) proposed the Union government to set a suitable year and take whatever actions for actual decline in road accidents rate and causalities caused by road accidents across the nation.
A MP seconded the proposal and the Hluttaw approved to discuss the proposal inviting the MPs to enlist for discussion if they are interested.
Member of Amyotha Hluttaw Bill Committee Daw Nan Ni Ni Aye read out the analysis report of the bill committee on Union Election Bill. UEC Member U Myint Naing proposed to consider the UEC bill and a representative seconded the proposal.
The Hluttaw approved the proposal. MPs then approved the amendments made to the UEC bill and UEC member U Myint Naing proposed the Hluttaw to pass the UEC bill and a MP seconded the proposal.
The Amyotha Hluttaw Speaker sought the approval of the Hluttaw to pass the UEC bill as amended. No MP raised objection and the Hluttaw approved the proposal.
Dr Banya Aung Moe of Mon State Constituency No (7) proposed to consider the Republic of the Union of Myanmar National Races Affairs Bill and a MP seconded the proposal. Dr Banya Aung Moe then read out the Republic of the Union of Myanmar National Races Affairs Bill.
The Hluttaw decided to adjourn the further discussion of the bill for a while. The fourth day third regular session of the First Amyotha Hluttaw came to an end at 4.05 pm. At today’s session, supplements were made to the rights and privileges of financial and legal affairs commission members, donation of 41 books by U Pe Myint was recorded, Union ministers replied to 10 questions, three proposals were made, two bills submitted, one bill discussed and one bill passed.