August 19, 2016

Let’s Be Patient

Khin Maung Myint

I cannot understand why some people are so impatient with the pace of the developments taking shape. It is easy for the bystanders to be readily critical of those who had to take the responsibility in the running of an administration.
Right after the November elections, people are anxious to know as to who will become what, in the new administration set up by the winning party. The process of establishing a new administration is not an easy task. It is very important to get the right persons in the right places. Meticulous vetting and screening should be made in choosing the persons to fill the various positions. As the practice of the democratic process is still not well familiar to most of us, some people do not know the intricacies involved in the transition from one administration to the other. Thus it is not surprising that some are impatient for the wait.
At first they wanted to know who will become the speakers and deputy speakers of the upper and the lower houses of the parliament. Many speculations and rumors emerged. When the names of those chosen for the said positions were confirmed and the Hlutaws were in session, their attentions or rather their curiosities turned to who will become the president and vice presidents and so on.
Some were hasty to comment that a certain ethnic group was not represented in the selection of the speakers. I had to reason with one such person and told him to wait and see, as there are many positions of importance remaining to be filled. Then when some important parliamentary committees are formed, we noticed that most of the members of the minority groups, irrespective of the parties they represent, are chosen as members. Even some prominent members of the ruling party and the military representatives are included. These developments indicate the inclusiveness and the diversity in representations. Such moves would be very beneficial to the national reconciliation and the unity of the people.
As I’m outside the country at the moment, I was unable to keep myself updated on the latest developments at home. Only a few days ago, I had the opportunity to read some news online and was disappointed with some media coverages. One local English language journal made an assumption that due to the delay in making the nominations for the ministers’ posts, public,  the foreign investors are cautious and hesitant to invest in Myanmar. I couldn’t imagine how they came to such conclusions. Even ordinary persons can guess that the majority of the ministers in the new administration would be new faces, unknown even to the locals let alone the foreigners. In my opinion, the government policies, rather than the individuals who will be the ministers, are more important to the foreign investors at this stage of the transitions. Another piece of news is more absrd. It reported that the inability to reach an agreement between the military and the elected party must be the reason that the presidential nominee hasn’t been named as yet. The media should not make such blind or random speculations. It is the most unfounded news item that shouldn’t have been  printed, as it can be misleading. They should know better than the public that there is still ample time, for the election of a president to replace the outgoing one, whose tenure would expire only at the end  of March.
Here is yet another disturbing news. It’s about the leakage of the nominees for the speakers’ posts in the state and regional parliaments. I can’t imagine what purpose it would serve by knowing beforehand. Are these the truths or speculations? If they are true, they tarnish the image of the party concerned, indicating their incompetence; they should be more discreet. If they are speculations, why can’t we be patient to wait. Such news are annoying and undesirable.
Such irresponsible reporting are unethical. They may not have done it intentionally to spread misinformations, but they are very misleading and could create undesirable misunderstandings. As our country is in the process of transition, the situations are very fragile and caution should be taken not to create misunderstandings. I’m not a politician, but just a dutiful citizen who wants to see our country develop and prosper. I’m not advocating for any political party or organization. However, I deem it my duty to point out if I come across any action that is detrimental to the development and prosperity of the country and affect the nation-building process.
I would like to urge my fellow-countrymen to be patient and have understanding to the complexity of the transition process. As this would be the first time ever, in the history of our country, for us to witness a proper transfer of the state power between the incumbent and the incoming governments. Every step of the process need be trodden with caution and meticulous planning, especially for the incoming government.
I would like to mention about an article, titled “Navigating the choppy waters in the Myanmar’s post-election era”, which appeared in the 15 January issue of the GNLM daily. The article was written by the incumbent Pyidaungsu Minister U Soe Thane, the minister at the Office of the President. He had outlined constructively with deep sincerity, the challenges, which the incoming government would have to face. Those challenges are indeed very pressing and sensitive issues that would need extreme caution and tactfulness in tackling them as in navigating a ship through the choppy waters. I will not be discussing what those challenging issues are, but just mentioning to make my point that the incoming government has to be overly cautious and tactful in planning a course of action to be able to navigate smoothly through the choppy waters.
In conclusion, I would like to emphasize the importance of the roles we citizens must play to assist in the nation-building process. We need to be patient and give the new government a chance to do their duties without pressuring them. We should not worry them by spreading rumors and misinformations. Such activities could create misunderstandings and controversies that would require them to clarify and address. We must avoid any action that could hinder or stall the nation-building process. Don’t make waves that would cause the choppy waters choppier. It is the civic duty of every citizen to assist in the nation-building. Let’s hope there are no uncharted waters ahead, which could be more difficult to navigate than the choppy waters.


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