Skilled Burmese Have Duty to Return: 88 Gen

88 Generation Students leader Min Ko Naing speaking on Facebook. (Photo: 88 Gen / Facebook)

Burma‘s future prosperity is under threaten from a severe skills shortage and so educated nationals living abroad should return to help develop the country, says 88 Generation Students leader Min Ko Naing.

The 50-year-old activist, who spent 24 years in prison for his role in peaceful democracy demonstrations, made the comments in a Facebook video published on Thursday. “Your motherland and your country is suffering and under threat from a lack of education,” he said. “You must all sympathize with your countrymen who have no education.

“The more people are uneducated, the more they are oppressed by authoritarian regimes. The people have suffered a lot and they feel like they are slaves under this oppressor. With education they could develop their minds as knowledge can open their eyes and ears. I want you all to help with this.”

The 88 Generation has so far visited 11 out of Burma’s 14 states and divisions in order to learn about the real situation on the ground from ordinary people. Various delegations found that there are many people who do not know how to react to authorities despite being aware that they were being exploited or had their rights abused.

Many Burmese children are only able to study at Buddhist monasteries, especially in areas of Upper Burma where government schools barely function and students must rely on classes taught by monks.

“I want you all to consider not just education but also civil rights as they are treated by the international community,” said Min Ko Naing. “All human beings need education and knowledge. There are workers who ask their employers to set a 12-hour working day at factories while the international community only allows eight hours.

“They must have poor education to work 12 hours a day. They all have a sad face and ask for foreign investment for help reducing work times. There are children aged 10 and 14 years old who cannot study as they have to work at factories and teashops. There are children as well who are affected by fighting in Kachin State and have had their houses burnt down in Arakan State.”

Min Ko Naing emphasized that Burma’s current political reform process was nowhere near complete and there will be many challenges during this frustrating period of transition. “We should not fight amongst ourselves and cooperate with other people to fight for our rights,” he said.

The best-selling novelist said that those people who believed that the country needed sophisticated military weaponry and a fearsome armed forces to maintain peace must be challenged, however difficult the confrontation might be.

“You all know more than us the value of education and how educated people manage their countries around the world,” said Min Ko Naing. “It is the right time to come back to work for the country. We are constructing a road. We need people to help grow flowers on this road.”

7 Responses to Skilled Burmese Have Duty to Return: 88 Gen

  1. 8888 Generation is the only political group which is trustworthy to follow. If they form a political party, I will contribute my time and my money for the party. Because they proved firm enough that they really love the Union of Burma and her citizens.

  2. That is a right time of  Burmese people around the world who really love their country to return home.

  3. Mr. Paw Oo Tun,
    I wouldn’t like to live in a corrupt Chinese colony. Stop the invasive Chinese gas/oil pipeline, the dams, the railway line to Kunming, the Kyaukphyu Chinese terminal (naval base), the copper mines, the jade mines, the logging, etc., etc.
    I blame Than Shwe the “tayoke-pay-min” (not tayoke pyay min Narathihapati) for selling the country to the greedy Chinese, who ruined the natural environment and the social fabric (not to mention education and health care) of the country where I was born more than 65 years ago. Treating the symptoms won’t cure the disease!
    By the way, if Burma is a truly sovereign country, why does it tolerate UWSA (PLA proxy), KIA, KNLA and all these other ethnic armies? What does the Burmese  constitution say about “rebel war-lords”  and “citizenship”? Burma has to clean up a lot of this “political mess” and “Chinese guanxi” piled up over years of corrupt, incompetent and despotic rule of the military and their cronies,  the upper-class oligarchy, bribed by Chinese money. Get rid of this corrupt half-Chinese “upper-class” first if you really want to help the underdogs: the “poor uneducated” Burmese.

  4. It’s far too early for educated overseas “Myanmar” people to return (I’ll assume it was a mistake in the article to onlt refer to “skilled Burmese”).

    There is no legal reform, the tools of the oppressors are still on the statute books, and there is still no rule of law as any civilised society would understand it.

    No serious efforts have been made to curtail the rampant corruption and abuses of power by officials at all levels. They thwart an awful lot of the good work that has gone on protecting their thiefdoms.

    I could go on and on, but suffice to say that until the situation above changes and that can only  happen organically, then people would be stupid to return.

  5. I always have a vision of going back to Burma and help to develop the Burmese society. The way that I feel about Burma is not because of I owe Burma too much. I think, the western society who are kind and wisely to give me a chance to be completely a humanbeing is the one I owe alot to. Ihave achance to study and prosper in the west just out of western people kindness. Yet, I always dream of my birth country Burma to be develop, prosper, peaceful and just. The meaningful changes has already started, but it is only just beginning. There will be many negotiating has to be done about the status of Burmese people living abroad and becomming citizens of oversea countries. Burmese government has to clearify the law and birth rights of Burmese citizens or many Burmese people living abroad will simply stay away from Burma. It is much to loose for them going back to Burma than hold their status. So, what is the government agenda about Burmese people living abroad? Will they be able to hold dual citizenship? If government approve that, it is going to give strength to Burma. There are many Burmese who can bring back knowledge and investment to Burma. The only thing government to do is to do meaningful reform.

  6. The Burmese Freedom Fighter

    It is nice to hear the sounds of 88 generation group welcoming oversea Burmese to their native land. The hard reality is not patronizing of them to go back Burma, but opportunity of jobs with dignity. Hardcore people like you have to do a lot of ground work to attract them with the incentive of job opportunities and better lives. They all are ordinary human who do not have the strength of endurance and patients like you do. Otherwise, they all would have been in the same boat as you are Ko Min Ko Naing in the first place. 

    Human nature always search for better live, and you have to prove that Burma has such an offer for them. If you initiate some sort of social enterprise model type of jobs, some very compassionate skillful Burmese will return, not necessary only for Burma, but also for themselves too. Win-Win situation is the common ground, not patronizing.  The ground works of getting appropriate visa, shelters and decent jobs is a must to attract them; Right now, even appropriate visa are not given to Burma born foreign citizens; Immigration of Burma is so dumb that it copy the wrong usage of word from the Singapore where permanent visa is quoted while in reality is temporary visa for 1  to 3 years stay for their work in Burma. Until win-win situation are not available in Burma, I don’t think a noticeable members of Burmese expatriates will come back to Burma.

    The Burmese Freedom Fighter

  7. Can you hear yourself?

    Burma is a dignified as well as a rich country. 

    All that is needed is to get rid of the military and cut down the military budget and stop the insanity of killing each other.

    That is the only reason of people suffering all over the country rather than not getting American loans to sell out the country via WB, IMF, ADB, ABCDEF, etc. Once started the debt will be going up like rocket so that Burma will never be able to pay even the interest let alone the country like the Chitty who will get all the daughters eventually. Most of the so-called debt will be paying their own people for analysis, study, road buildings,etc., the only thing the people of Burma drooling for it will get is the bill. Roads are for hauling their own stuff. Not for the need of the people by the way.

    That is happening today because of Thein Sein fronted military has no idea or imagination apart from looking like the decaying ASEAN countries, just like you do incidentally,  and it is now supported by equally stupid and imagination-less Aung San Suu Kyi who did a U turn and is now screwing the people of Burma who sadly still have false hope in her. By controlling  her, the Americans control the whole country to work with Thein Sein Fronted military to shred the country into pieces, land as well as people and societal structure, for THEIR benefit. Hence that Clinton woman is coming as she has that womanly- sisterhood- connection with Aung San Suu Kyi and because people of Burma like famous people.

    In stead of asking people to do ineffectual things accepting the current state of military hegemony and militarization , they need to be stopped , not tell them nicely.

    The call is for seeing the  stupidity of the current  situation and to get RID of this Thein Sein Fronted military selling out the country rather than asking people to do bits, to make them feel good with no real change. 

    200 more primary schools will not change the status of them growing up as debt ridden wage earners unless Thein Sein / Aung San Suu Kyi promoted surrender tot he international business corporations take over is stopped before it starts.

    The international business’ arch-agent Obama is coming to town not because  he is in love with your grandmothers but to screw all her children and children’s children.

    Community initiated Education plan! Like a puncture repair . We need a new tyre.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 characters available. Comments with external links in the body text will be deleted by moderators.