Jailed Senior NLD Leader Reported to be in Hospital 

By Hein Htoo Zan 16 December 2022

Dr. Zaw Myint Maung, the jailed former Chief Minister of Mandalay Region and a deputy chair of the National League for Democracy (NLD) Party, has been in Mandalay General Hospital since early December, according to legal sources.

The prominent politician, 71, has been suffering from leukaemia since 2019. He is serving a 29 year sentence in Mandalay’s Obo Prison, after a military regime court convicted him of corruption, electoral fraud and violating COVID-19 regulations.

He is being treated at Mandalay General Hospital as his health situation was unable to be resolved in the Obo Prison hospital.

“I heard that he was sent to the hospital over a week ago. The court should grant him bail due to his critical health situation,” said a lawyer from Mandalay.

Referring to Section 497 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, the lawyer added that emergency bail for health reasons can be granted to any prisoner, even ones convicted of high treason or who are facing the death penalty.

“All the charges filed against him are absurd. And the court has already convicted him. In such a situation, he should be granted bail and allowed to be under home arrest, while getting the best healthcare to save his life. The junta should do that on humanitarian grounds,” said an advocate who has been assisting in the defense of detained NLD leaders since early last year.

Dr Zaw Myint Maung was sentenced to 29 years in jail after being convicted on 10 charges: five under the Anti-Corruption Law, two relating to breaches of electoral law, two cases under the Natural Disaster Management Law and one charge under Section 505(b) of the Penal Code.

The ousted Chief Minister entered politics following the 1988 pro-democracy uprising and won elections in 1990, 2012, 2015 and 2020 representing the NLD. He was arrested on the first day of last year’s coup, along with other senior NLD figures.