Burma

Former Yangon Chief Minister’s Wife Testifies Preparing Bribes for Suu Kyi

By The Irrawaddy 12 November 2021

The wife of the former Yangon Region Chief Minister testified on Friday that she prepared and packed gold and US dollars at the request of her husband to give to Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, The Irrawaddy has learned.

Daw Khin Mi Mi Kywe, the wife of former Yangon Region Chief Minister U Phyo Min Thein, appeared at a Naypyitaw court on Friday as a witness for the prosecution against ousted State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, who is on trial for alleged corruption.

U Phyo Min Thein testified in October that he gave seven viss (around 11.4kg) of gold and US$600,000 to the State Counselor in 2017 and 2018 while she was in office. Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has dismissed his claims as ‘all absurd’.

On Friday, Daw Khin Mi Mi Kywe told the court that she took gold from her gold shop and bought US dollars from money changers and prepared them for Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, after her husband said that he wanted to give them to her in exchange for her protection and support.

However, she could not present receipts for the gold or the US dollars to the court. Daw Khin Mi Mi Kywe said also that she did not remember the dates the gold and cash were handed over. She also said that she did not accompany her husband when he allegedly gave the bribes to Daw Aung San Suu Kyi.

“The cross-examination results turned out to be good. It is fair to say that Daw Khin Mi Mi Kywe could not prove that [the gold and dollars] were given,” a source close to the court told The Irrawaddy.

The junta has brought 11 charges against the State Counselor, accusing her of incitement, breaking the Official Secrets Act, the Import and Export Law, the Telecommunication Law and the Natural Disaster Management Law, in addition to corruption charges.

Four of the corruption charges are being heard every Friday in a special court in Naypyitaw. But only two charges were heard at this Friday’s hearing, as witnesses did not appear in the other cases.


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