State Counsellor and Chairperson of Central Committee to Implement the Development of Border Areas and Ethnic Nationals Daw Aung San Suu Kyi accompanied by Union Ministers Lt-Gen Kyaw Swe, Lt-Gen Ye Aung, U Min Thu and U Ohn Win, Deputy Minister U Hla Maw Oo and officials left Nay Pyi Taw by special flight and arrived to Putao, Kachin State yesterday morning. The State Counsellor and party were welcomed at Putao airport by State Chief Minister Dr. Khet Aung, State Hluttaw Deputy Speaker U Khan Lin, state ministers, Hluttaw representatives, representatives of political parties, ethnic national cultural troupes and officials.
The State Counsellor and party went by motorcade to Malikha Lodge Hotel and at the hotel hall, Union Minister for Border Affairs Lt-Gen Ye Aung explained about the status of constructing Maggwayza-Ngalondam-Ridam-Khaunglanphu (65 miles 4 furlong) road in fiscal year 2017-2018 and FY 2018-2019, road construction plan for FY 2019-2020 and FY 2020-2021. Chief Engineer U Khin Maung Latt explained about engineering portion of Maggayza-Khaunglanphu road. Next State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi inspected a scale model of the construction of Maggwayza-Ngalondam-Ridam-Khaunglanphu (65 miles 4 furlong) road.
Afterwards the State Counsellor and party accompanied by State Chief Minister and state ministers reached the Maggwayza temporary pandal in Nagmon Township by Tatmadaw helicopters and attended the opening ceremony of Maggwayza-Mt. Sanlutchat (33 miles 6 furlong) road section. At the opening ceremony State Counsellor and Chairperson of the Central Committee to Implement the Development of Border Areas and Ethnic Nationals Daw Aung San Suu Kyi said, “I am honored to be able to attend the inauguration ceremony for this road.
I am even happier to have the chance to meet with the local residents of our country. It’s not easy to come here, but I do feel much closer with everyone after arriving nonetheless. Paving roads such as this one is mainly for our regional development. But more importantly, it also brings all ethnic nationals closer to each other. It’s not easy to meet one another without any roads connecting us. Development is important for a country but even more important is the strength gained from unity. This is why I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to the workers who built this road.”
“I believe all the workers in the country are here. What I mean to say is every person from every region needs to participate in developing our nation. Also the lesson we can take from here is that this road was very difficult to pave. And no matter how difficult it was through perseverance and strong will we managed to complete the task. Then there is nothing we cannot accomplish.”
“I’ve noticed that most of the ethnic nationals are small in stature. I think you all require more nutritious food. I’m sure this road would allow much more nutritious food to be transported to you. Everyone needs to help so that the Young Generation can grow up strong and healthy. Now that the road is finished we will be seeing more opportunities for development.”
“All of our regional development efforts are for the benefit of all ethnic nationals so that they may grow both mentally and physically. We want everyone to enjoy the equal living standards. It is also the national pride to see every citizen living life at the same standard. It is not right for there to be a sizable disparity in the distribution of wealth in the country. This is related to transportation too, it’ll be difficult for development to come if there are not good enough roads for a selected area. That’s why I believe paving roads is a very honorable work.”
Use the new road to build closer relations with each other
“In my travels around the country I have seen workers building roads everywhere. However many of the workers are from very far regions. For example, in Kachin State we saw a lot of workers from my father’s homeland, Magway Region. Seeing ethnic Nationals going to other far away regions and states to help in any way they can is very inspiring for me. Likewise, it is equally inspiring to be gathered like this now. Thank you everyone for attending. I did not expect so many people to be gathered here today. Because I know it is still difficult to travel around here. But now we can see that motorcycles can access the roads more easily and people can move around quite easily too. I kindly urge all of you to use this opportunity to build closer relations with each other and to help each other more than you have before.”
“You must strengthen your community so that you can strengthen yourself. No one can survive on their own. This is why I want you all to have a mindset of helping other regions in their development once we are developed. Each of us must protect our rights; but we must also carry out our responsibilities. We cannot just look out for one side.”
“Similarly, all governments receive their authority from the people and have the responsibility to perform the duties they have been entrusted with. Only by collectively taking responsibility will our nation develop. I feel energetic seeing the lush forests of Kachin State surviving till now. We can see the beauty and preciousness of our country. Each of us is responsible for protecting this beautiful country. We must be careful not to become indifferent to our surroundings we have stayed in for so long. We must cherish and safeguard it. It’s true that it’s not easy living here. But the difficulties that you overcome here will strengthen you.”
That’s why, it is important for us to conserve our country which owns beautiful natural resources. Sometimes, when development comes, natural environment goes some times. That’s why, when we start to go for development, we must think about how to conserve the environment. We are responsible to teach our children to love and conserve the natural environment. Whether the parents are rich or not, have high-ranking positions or not, the best legacy they can pass down to their children is the right attitude. Everybody can do it.
Right attitude is a good legacy for next generation
If we cannot give a good legacy of right attitude, the children would not become helpful ones for others and finally they cannot be beneficial for themselves. Therefore, I would like to urge our citizens of the Union to do right and to have right attitudes so that we can give the right legacy to our children. Our country is home to a diversity of ethnic people, with different languages.
But, we don’t need to be afraid of diversity. Diversity is a very interesting thing we own and is helpful for each other to give strength. The collective strength from different people is more powerful than the individual.
The quality to strengthen friendship by embracing diversity must become the strength of our country, said the State Counsellor.
We found the community of different ethnic people in this far-flung area and it shows the dignity and quality of local ethnic peoples for coexistence. Please conserve this quality because the quality to strengthen friendship by embracing diversity must become the strength of our country.
Today, we can see that communities which attach great attachment to loving kindness are decreasing in the world.
If we build a community which can work for development based on loving kindness, we can enjoy peace which is more valuable than others. We need to train ourselves to be spiritually developed and mature. At the same time, we need to work for enjoying physical development to a certain extent. Only when we can work taking a balance between the said two things, can our country be developed.
We inaugurated the road today. It means, we have shown the road to development. The road would be beneficial for the region only when there are road users. That’s why please use this new road so that it becomes valuable. I would like you all to make the best use of this new road to know each other and to bring about unity, to carry out the development works in this region as much as possible and to use this new road so that this new infrastructure would benefit the local people. ”
Following the speech of the State Counsellor, Union Minister for Border Affairs Lt-Gen Ye Aung, Chairman of the Work Committee to Implement the Development of Border Areas and Ethnic Nationals Chairman explained about the construction of Maggwayza-Mt. Sanlutchat (33 miles 6 furlong) road section and road section to be constructed in the future.
The opening ceremony of Maggayza-Mt. Sanlutchat (33 miles 6 furlong) road section was then continued at the start of the road section where State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, Union Ministers Lt-Gen Kyaw Swe, Lt-Gen Ye Aung, U Min Thu and U Ohn Win and Chief Minister Dr. Khet Aung cut the ceremonial ribbon to open the road.
After posing for commemorative group photos with the attendees the State Counsellor inspected the Maggayza-Mt. Sanlutchat (33 miles 6 furlong) road section and road by cars and cordially greeted the local people.
Later the State Counsellor left Maggayza for Khaunglanphu Town by Tatmadaw helicopter and met with Hluttaw representatives, political parties and departmental officials and local populace in the Khaunglanphu Town hall.
All ethnic nationals must have equal rights
At the meeting State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi said, “We are placing much emphasis towards development of far and remote places. It is important that there is equality everywhere. It is more important for difficult places. Support must be provided for less developed areas to develop quickly. In doing this it must be looked at from all angles of economic, social and politics. As our country is a union all ethnic nationals must have equal rights.
We are here to attend a road opening ceremony. However, we are taking this opportunity because we want to engage with the people as much as we can. Among the people, children are the most important, because the children are the ones who will serve the country for the longest. Only when the children are educated can our country’s future be good. That is why we are placing emphasis on education and health.
Only when our people area healthy and educated can they serve for the good of the country. Much effort must be placed towards making the children in this region fully nourished. Only when they are nourished, strong and healthy can they serve the duties of the country. Only when they are educated can they help others.
As we meet with the local elders, let us know the main requirements of the region. Please discuss how and in what way the government can support and help. Forest reservation matters submitted by the locals are to preserve the nature for future. In conducting the preservation and conservation works, it will be coordinated with the economic and social requirements of the people. It is heard that the trees and plants in this region have medicinal values. We must think and do in such a way that such valuable matters support the locals.
Just as in the saying “don’t let the snake die and don’t let the stick break”, it must be beneficial for both sides. The trees and plants must not become extinct and the livelihood of the locals must not be affected. The Ministry of Border Affairs had said that bridges are required to have a good road connection. We will place much emphasis to fulfill the bridge requirements as quickly as possible by coordinating with the Ministry of Construction.
I think the reason for the low success rates of youngsters in basic education level is the requirement to give trainings to teachers. We will make arrangements to conduct refresher courses for teachers so that they can teach the youngsters to attain higher success rates. We will also provide sufficient amounts of teaching aid materials.
I agree that a new hospital needs to be constructed for health. We’ll coordinate with the Ministry of Health and Sports to do this as soon as possible. Similarly for farm lands we’ll coordinate with the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation to develop fallow lands into cultivable lands.”
After the State Counsellor had delivered her speech a local C Di Htar discussed about regional development matters.
After the meeting the State Counsellor presented food and dried goods consisting of rice, cooking oil, salt, beans, dried fish and instant noodles for the local people to the officials.
The State Counsellor and party then left Khaunglanphu for Machanbaw by helicopters. There, the State Counsellor inspected regional development status and upon arrival at Malikha Suspension Bridge (Machanbaw) Ministry of Construction, Special Bridge Group 1 Deputy Director U Saw Zarni Hla explained about the particulars of the bridge. After the explanation, the State Counsellor and party crossed and inspected the Malikha Suspension Bridge (Machanbaw). The State Counsellor and party then continued by car to Putao and inspected the Mulashidi suspension bridge for jeep on the Myitkyina-Sumprabum-Putao road.
After inspecting the suspension bridge State Counsellor Daw Aung San Su Kyi met and was introduced in person to Putao Town people, local people and elders in Malikha Lodge Hotel. At the meeting the State Counsellor said she came to do the necessary in basic infrastructure required for the people. In doing so, she was glad to see the greenery and thriving natural surroundings. The open and candid comments and suggestions of the locals on peace, stability and development are requested and the government would do whatever it could to fulfill their requests.
Peace, drug eradication, rehabilitation discussed
Local elders then spoke of the importance of achieving peace in Putao region, discussed drug eradication and requirements for rehabilitation, requirements for travel business development in Putao region, requirement of Putao circular road and bridges and giving priority to employing local graduates in local positions. The State Counsellor in return explained that matters will be conducted fairly and equitably in accordance with the government policy.
The meeting was attended by Lay Yin Kwin Ward Shan Culture Committee Chairman U Tin Hla, Hokho Ward Shan Culture Committee joint secretary Daw Swe Tun Tun Nwe, Pan Hlaing Ward Kaungmulone Trustee Board member U Saw Nwe Thaik Shwe who were Buddhists, Myoma Ward Yawem Literature and Culture Association Chairman U Mayit Yawshu, Lay Yin Kwin Ward Yawem Literature and Culture Association secretary U Sayit Dee, Dote Tan Ward Yawem Literature and Culture Association member U Dane Khan Dawi, Hoko Ward Lisu Culture Committee acting chairman U J Fada, Lone Sut Ward Lisu Culture Committee secretary U Di Diye, Lone Sut Ward Jinghpaw Vice Chairman U Sin Wa, Kaukkadaung Ward Jinghpaw Culture Committee secretary U Aung Kham who were Christians, Hoko Ward township development committee chairman U Akhiohta, Myoma Ward township development committee member U Khaw Du Sartan, Kaukkadaung Ward township development committee member U No Kham, Mulashidi Ward township development committee member U Yilisa, Daw Nan Sai from Kaukkadaung Ward, Myoma Ward township election sub-commission member U Malaung David, Hoko Ward township election sub-commission member Daw Lafigya, U Chan Gyaung Sar of Lay Yin Kwin Ward and district election sub-commission chairman U Htam Tan Firam from Lone Sut Ward. Later in the evening the State Counsellor and Putao town elders attended the dinner hosted by Kachin State government. —MNA (Translated by Zaw Min, Zaw Htet Oo)