Nay Pyi Taw, February 28
Commander-in-Chief of Defence Services Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, accompanied by Union Minister for Home Affairs Lt-Gen Soe Htut, Union Minister for Border Affairs Lt-Gen Ye Aung, Commander-in-Chief (Navy) Admiral Tin Aung San, Commander-in-Chief (Air) General Maung Maung Kyaw, senior military officers from the Office of the Commander-in-Chief (Army), Commander of Central Command Maj-Gen Kyaw Swa Lin and officials, observed the regional development undertakings in Ngathayauk Town and the surrounding villages in NyaungU Township, Mandalay Region and cordially met with local residents this afternoon.
First, the Senior General and party arrived at Kanthaya Village in Ngathayauk, and were welcomed by village administrator U Myat Min and villagers. They then inspected the mechanized dredging of the village drinking water supply lake by local military engineering unit to become a five-foot deep lake as it could store only six million gallons and could supply water from the start of the storage season to December. The village administrator and officials explained points of the undertaking. The Senior General then cordially conversed with villagers and discussed village development undertakings. After the completion of the deepening process, the lake will be able to store about nine million gallons of water to ensure year-round water supply. Water from the lake will be pumped into two 20,000-gallon tanks and two 3,500-gallon water towers to supply water to the village.
On arrival at Kannigyi Village, the Senior General and party were welcomed by village administrator U Than Hlaing and villagers.
Then, the Senior General inspected the construction of the 6-inch thick concrete floor of octagonal Mya Kan Tha, the floor of which had been leaking and could not hold water for long. The village administrator and an official explained the tasks to the Senior General. Afterwards, the Senior General cordially met with local residents and gave advice on regional development. When the floor has been constructed, water can be stored in the lake all the year round and can be supplied not only to Kannigyi Village but also to nearby villages including Telma, Aungtha and Wetlu villages.
Then, the Senior General and party continued to Padauk household group in Byugyi Village-tract in Ngathayauk Town, where the Senior General was welcomed by officials from the Department of Rural Road Development (Kyaukpadaung) of the Ministry of Construction and the Ministry of Border Affairs and local residents. An official from Department of Rural Road Development (Kyaukpadaung) reported to the Senior General on construction of Ngathayauk-Gyanhlee gravel road with the use of border affairs funds. After hearing the report, the Senior General fulfilled the needs and gave advice on regional development to local residents.
Afterwards, the Senior General inspected the construction of a school building in Basic Education High School (Affiliate) in Panidwin Village and construction materials donated by families of Tatmadaw (Army, Navy and Air) Then, the Senior General met with local residents in the precinct of the Zinayadana-marn Aung Pagoda, where the Senior General was welcomed by Chairman U Thein Po of Taungzin Village-tract, town elders and local residents. The Senior General gave advice on regional development.
The Senior General cordially met with local residents and gave advice on regional development, saying the Tatmadaw is taking measures for regional development and benefits for local residents. The main business of the region is manufacturing and trading toddy palm products. Now, toddy palm plants are being sold due to lesser number of toddy palm climbers and financial problems. As number of those wishing to engage in toddy palm industry is lesser, he urged them to continuously maintain traditional toddy palm industries. As forefathers carried out livelihoods of toddy palm and grew these plants in the past, these plants benefit today’s people. More than 20 years old toddy palm become grown-up plants for production. As such, all need to continuously grow toddy palm for new generations. Efforts must be made for producing quality domestic products made of materials from toddy palm. Town elders should systematically lead livestock tasks such as farming of dairy cows, oxen and goats and other breeding tasks suitable for the region in addition to agricultural tasks. Manufacturing quality value-added domestic products in modern packaging systems can help increased income and contribute to individuals as well as regional development.
All must strive for enhancement of education qualification of local people to become educated ones for development of the region. Hence, it is necessary to encourage emergence of educated persons who can benefit native regions. As those who finished school education will have a wider scale of knowledge, youths are allowed to prioritize attending the institutes, colleges and universities related to agriculture and livestock breeding in conformity with the main business of the region so as to benefit development of their regions.
Concerning greening in the region, emphasis should be placed on successful growing of trees in respective wards and villages. Each village in community system should plant toddy palm, tamarind, neem, cutch and other trees suitable for the regions and grow firewood plantations in respective villages for contributing to increased family incomes and regional greening. As such, it is necessary to hand down good legacy to new generations. The roads are being improved for better transport but, it is the duty of local people to maintain them. If more travellers come to the region, that will contribute to regional development, so it is necessary to plant trees on the both sides of the roads to ensure beautiful landscaping. Meanwhile, cooperative measures must be taken to maintain the roads and ensure proper drainage.
As everyone wants to live a healthy, long life, every individual needs to take care of their health. Only if one is healthy, can one pursue education and work. Only if one is able to work, can one improve one’s life. Betel quid consumption increases in the region. Consumption of betel quid and smoking can cost a lot and benefit nothing. Consideration is therefore necessary as it is like buying disease with one’s own money. Consuming Ks-500 worth of betel quid per day amounts to breaking two or three eggs, which provides nutrition for you and your family, for nothing. So this should be taken into account. Money spent on betel quid and smoking on a daily basis should be used in buying eggs and meat that are nutritious, thereby contributing to health and saving expenditure. So, it is necessary to stay away from alcohol, smoking and chewing betel quid as much as possible. And individuals need to take care of their meals and lifestyle, the Senior General suggested.
After the meeting, the Senior General presented foodstuff produced by Tatmadaw factories forthe local people to the village administrators and officials, who returned local products to the Senior General.