Human Rights Course Forced to Close

A human rights training program was shut down by authorities in Magwe Division. (Photo: Reuters)

A week-long human rights training program to empower local people in Yay Nan Chaung, Magwe Division, was forced to close down by the township Election Commission for operating without permission.

Organized by members of the main opposition National League for Democracy (NLD) party, the course sought to teach the community about their rights and responsibilities as Burma moves towards democracy under President’s Thein Sein’s reformist administration.

“It is my family who organized the training,” said Khin Saw Htay, a member of the local NLD party. “Since it is not organized by the party, we do not need to request permission from the Election Commission and they do not have the authority to force us to shut down.”

Because of the order to cease teaching, only the course’s opening ceremony could be held at the township hall on Aug. 21.

“The training is now carrying on at my home although it is too little space,” added Khin Saw Htay. “However, we will eventually move back to the township hall no matter what happens.”

The course involves studying the widely-condemned 2008 Constitution while educating participants about human rights, children’s rights, women’s right and political science. Around 60 local people signed up for the course.

“Since the president and his new government are moving forward for the development of education in the country, this training is just help from the private sector and that is a right of citizens which is mentioned in the Constitution,” said Than Aung, one of the organizers.

Course leaders submitted a complaint letter condemning the action of the township Election Commission to Thein Sein, the chairmen of the Upper and Lower Houses of Parliament, the chairman of the Union Election Commission and the National Human Rights Commission.

“We cannot accept this action of the township Election Commission as it contradicts the basic rights of citizens,” added Than Aung. “We see it as a withdrawal action despite the president and the government’s vow to move on and not turn back.”

6 Responses to Human Rights Course Forced to Close

  1. Censorship has followed the free expressions of men and women like a shadow throughout history.

  2. Ridiculous – and revealing of the true course of events and extent of the fake changes in Burma.

  3. A Burmese Freedom Fighter

    Unalienable rights, born with us, include the right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness. All the unjust laws, unworthy of abiding, has to be repealed without any delay. The change will not come from anywhere since it is within you and you are the change that you have been seeking for. Your action of using your right to education can’t be denied by anyone including current government.

    You are doing the right things Daw Khin Saw Htay to educate our Burmese people of what rights they have under the 2008 constitution of Burma, to which awareness of the people is required to be good citizens and it is always right to question any law whether it is compatible with the constant changing situation of the people.

    The township Election Commission in Yay Nan Chaung, Magwe Division is mistaken to close your training program, violating your birth right of education, and do not give up your fight against its unjust action. The right to education is our birth right to make a better society we live in, without that the society will be savage with the repetition of barbaric act, and the cycle of endless violent retaliations, putting all the citizens including ruling class of Burma in danger.

    A Burmese Freedom Fighter

  4. What is education?
    Who decides what education is?
    What is human right?
    Who protect the right to life and limb, liberty and pursuit of happiness?
    Who pursues unhappiness?
    What is happiness?
    What is plagiarism?

    • A Burmese Freedom Fighter

      Hello Mr.Thinker,

      Keep thinking until the though you have right now turns into burning desire that will usher you to find more info to dig into and obtain them in the position of your imagination before it is translated into physical reality.

      Your burning desire can be born with the help of the education, which can be interpreted as the knowledge that comes out from within of you. The word Education comes from the Latin word “educo” which means “to draw forth from within. You already have that in you sine you are able to make some questions. Hope that help to your puzzle!

      A Burmese Freedom Fighter

  5. It seems like many of colonial laws and Ne Win’s laws are still in effect. We need everything new including the Constitutional and other laws which can fit for Democratic Society which we are wanting to see for the last 60 years.

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