Myanmar Junta to File Corruption Charges Against NLD Vice Chairman

By The Irrawaddy 9 July 2021

The military regime is planning to file corruption charges against National League for Democracy (NLD) Vice Chairman Dr. Zaw Myint Maung and the former Mandalay Region Minister of Electricity, Energy and Construction U Zarni Aung.

The junta-controlled state broadcaster Myanma Radio and Television announced on Tuesday that corruption charges under the Anti-Corruption Law would be filed against Dr. Zaw Myint Maung, who was also the Chief Minister of Mandalay Region until he was ousted in the junta’s Feb. 1 coup.

Dr. Zaw Myint Maung has been detained by the regime since the coup and already faces an incitement charge under Section 505(b) of the Penal Code, as well as a charge under Section 25/ 30(a) of the Natural Disaster Management Law for an alleged breach of COVID-19 regulations.

Now the military regime has accused him of accepting a bribe from a private company in September 2019, in return for granting land permits in Mandalay.

It also accused him of receiving 65 million kyats from the developer of the Amarapura town urbanization project, and US$100,000 from a businessman while receiving treatment for leukemia in Thailand in 2019.

“He has spent his whole life in prison [as a political prisoner under the previous military regime] and given his whole life for the country. My elder brother in the US bears all the costs for his medical treatment and he has received no other help, apart from mother Suu [Daw Aung San Suu Kyi] and the NLD’s health network,” wrote Dr. Zaw Myint Maung’s son on Facebook.

“You can check the bank accounts before he was appointed minister and now. He had nothing before and he has nothing at present. [The regime] is accusing a dying man out of spite,” he added.

Family members have not been allowed to see Dr. Zaw Myint Maung since he was detained on Feb. 1.

The regime has also accused Dr. Zaw Myint Maung, who was one of the most popular NLD ministers, of violating rules and regulations which allegedly led to financial losses for the country.

It has also accused U Zarni Aung of corruption for allegedly charging a below market rate rent for land leased for the NLD offices in Chanayethazan and Aungmyaythazan townships in Mandalay. He already faces a charge under the Natural Disaster Management Law for allegedly violating COVID-19 regulations.

Since its coup, the military regime has detained the majority of the NLD leadership and the party’s senior members and opened cases against them under charges that carry potentially long prison sentences.

Ousted State Counselor and NLD Chairwoman Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has also been charged with an alleged corruption case. as well as six other charges.

Dr. Aung Moe Nyo, who served as the Chief Minister of Magwe Region in the former NLD government, Magwe regional parliament Speaker U Tar and Magwe regional government ministers U Myint Zaw, Dr. Khin Maung Aye and U Tin Nwe Oo were also recently charged under the Anti-Corruption law.

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