U Gambira Released From Prison, Charges Dropped

By Zarni Mann 1 July 2016

MANDALAY — Nyi Nyi Lwin, the former monk and Saffron Revolution leader also known as U Gambira, was released from prison on Friday when all additional criminal charges against him were dropped.

Gambira, who served six months imprisonment at Mandalay’s Ohbo prison on an immigration conviction, was moved earlier this week to Rangoon’s Insein prison to face additional criminal charges in Bahan and Thanlyin township courts.

“The plaintiffs dropped all of the charges against me and now I am a free man,” he said, after appearing in Thanlyin court on Friday morning.

The additional charges could have put him behind bars for an additional two to 10 years, and the former monk was happy to hear that township officials and police had decided to drop the charges.

“Their actions went against the new government’s rule of law and the national reconciliation process. I hope there won’t be anymore cases like this against other citizens in the future,” he added.

Nyi Nyi Lwin was transferred from Mandalay to Rangoon this week to face charges for trespassing and destroying public property, which he allegedly admitted to after his release from prison in 2012. He allegedly broke into monasteries sealed by the government after a crackdown on monks protesting during the Saffron Revolution in 2007.