Burma

20 Fugitives, Including Judges, Administrators, Wanted on Suspicion of Corruption

By San Yamin Aung 10 June 2019

YANGON—Six judges, two district administrators, the head of a police station and a public prosecutor and a lawyer are all on a list of fugitives suspected of corruption, along with other government officials.

The list, released Sunday by the Myanmar Police Force, numbers 20 individuals and includes their photographs and personal information.

In February 2018 the police force issued a list of 12 fugitives that had gone on the run after being charged in 2017 and early 2018; 11 of them have still not been arrested and reappear on Sunday’s list. Four individuals who had been sued in 2014 and 2015 by the previous Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) are also on the list released Sunday.

Police said on Sunday that charges have been brought against the 20 fugitives for bribery, fraud, abetting and false complaints under the Anti-Corruption Law. The charges carry sentences from three to 15 years. Police have asked for the public’s cooperation.

The ACC was originally formed under the Anti-Corruption Law in 2014 to tackle the rampant corruption in the country. The incumbent National League for Democracy government revamped the commission in November 2017 and amended the law to expand the commission’s authority and undertake more investigations at higher levels than before.

Speaking at the parliament last month, ACC Chairman U Aung Kyi said despite their efforts, the overall level of corruption in the country has not improved. He said that his commission will carry out more investigations and prosecutions this year in an attempt to up its efforts.

The commission is also drafting a Whistle-blower Protection Bill to protect and encourage those who voluntarily disclose information about fraud or power abuse within government departments.

The ACC received 14,806 complaints between November 2017 and May 2019. Yangon Region topped the list with the most complaints, followed by Mandalay Region and Irrawaddy Region.

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