The Irrawaddy

Ne Win’s Grandsons Charged With Assaulting Bus Driver

YANGON — Two grandsons of former military dictator Ne Win are to appear in court on May 25 on charges of assaulting a man who worked as a driver for a company they own.

U Aung Myat, who was formerly employed as a bus driver by Omni Focus YBS Co., claims he was beaten by Kyaw Ne Win and Zwae Ne Win after the bus he was driving was involved in a minor accident with another one of their company’s vehicles, adding that he was unfairly dismissed from his job.

The brothers deny the claims and have opened their own case against U Aung Myat alleging careless driving.

U Aung Myat told The Irrawaddy on Tuesday that the brothers kicked him while wearing boots, and hit him on the head during the assault.

“Prior to the incident I was involved in a minor accident. I was driving out of a repair shop when another car drove in at the same time. The accident left the other car with a broken window,” he said. The vehicle he was driving was also damaged.

After the incident, he and his friend drove back inside the auto shop to have the damage to their vehicle repaired. While they were waiting, he said, Kyaw Ne Win and Zwae Ne Win arrived by car.

U Aung Myat said Kyaw Ne Win, Zwae Ne Win and their driver began beating him and his friend. Kyaw Ne Win kicked him while wearing boots, leaving him with injured ribs on his left side, he said.

“I felt pain and was unable to breathe properly after he kicked me. I couldn’t even talk for a while,” U Aung Myat said.

U Aung Myat made a complaint against the two brothers at a police station in Hlaing Tharyar Township on May 11, accusing them of assault. The court accepted the case for investigation.

The plaintiff claims Zwae Ne Win also punched him near his ear, while Kyaw Ne Win gripped him by the neck.

Kyaw Ne Win dared him to attempt to take legal action against the pair, he said.

“I told them [the collision] was an accident, and that I had not intended to do it, but they hit me while I was speaking,” U Aung Myat said.

As a result of the incident, U Aung Myat said, Kyaw Ne Win and Zwae Ne Win had him fired from Omni Focus YBS. They also confiscated his driving license and refused to pay him salary he was owed, he alleged.

Kyaw Ne Win denied U Aung Myat’s claims against him and his brother, telling Burmese-language newspaper 7Day Daily in an article published on Monday that he will fight for justice.

Police charged the brothers with violating Article 202 of the criminal code. The brothers opened their own case against U Aung Myat accusing him of violating Article 277 by driving carelessly.

All three are due to appear in court on May 25, according to U Aung Myat.

“As an employer, he should not beat a worker like this. He could have docked my pay or [taken proper steps to] dismiss me from the company,” he said. Such a physical assault is illegal, he said.

Relatives of Ne Win, including his grandsons, have been in trouble with the law in the past, and have drawn accusations of using their grandfather’s name to shield them from prosecution.