Senior General Min Aung Hlaing meets senior officer instructors, senior officer trainees from National Defence College through video conferencing

Nay Pyi Taw January 27

The National Defence College is an important institution of higher learning of the State and the Tatmadaw, and trainees must study their lectures through the four perspectives to have the critical thinking, to make decisive judgments and to know the objective conditions of the country after acquiring the right idea, said Commander-in-Chief of Defence Services Senior General Min Aung Hlaing during his meeting with senior officer instructors and senior officer trainees of the National Defence College in the form of video conferencing this morning.

Present at the meeting together with the Senior General were senior military officers from the Office of the Commander-in-Chief (Army) and the commandant of the National Defence College.

In his speech, the Senior General said enabling the trainees to shoulder high level duties and disseminating supporting knowledge for their work is the objective of the lectures of National Defence College. In some countries, senior government officers and civilians are also attending the NDC as it is supportive in serving the national interests. When we say national interests, it involves multiple sectors including politics, administration and defence, apart from economy. Politics, economy, administration and defence are also associated with international relations, which is another important area.

Multiple views must be taken into account for the national progress. The three driving forces—politics, economy and defence are buttressing a country, and these three driving forces are interrelated. Political power alone can do nothing in the absence of economic and defence strength. Some countries possess strong defence force, but fragile political power experience weakness in international relations and a lack robust economy. We can analyze the country into pre-independence period and post-independence period. In the historical times, we were under the monarchical system. The country adopted the parliamentary democracy after regaining independence, and in 1962, it adopted the centralized system. Since 2011, the country has been embracing the multi-party democracy. There might be different views in practising a system. Once,the rivalry between socialism and capitalism was so intense, and the people living under colonial oppression started embracing socialist ideologies. In 1886, the entire country fell under colonialism, and crises resulted from the hill region administration, the 91-department administration and the separation or non-separation movement surfaced through divide and rule policy.

Views differed based on the political or administrative system of the leaders. In accordance with the vision of National Defence College, trainees should have the broader political outlook, economic outlook, administrative outlook and defence outlook. Broader imagination needs historical knowledge, and in the absence of background information, the formation of concrete ideas will totally be impossible.

So, historical is a requisite. The Senior General then explained in detail the background history in connection with politics, economy, administration and defence. With regard to the political outlook, the Senior General said: “As

multi-party democratic system was chosen by the people, the Tatmadaw born of the people will never derail from the aspiration of the people.

The Tatmadaw also desires to ensure existence of the multi-party system. We all have experiences on practising of various systems. The country has been in many political crises and conflicts till today. To be able to practise the existing multiparty democratic system, we need to march towards the disciplined democratic country, fairly democratic country and innocently democratic country. I have reiterated such issue. Only when we wish to practice the democracy by considering the actual situation of the country depending on the aforesaid historical background, can we enjoy fruits of peaceful and stable democracy.”

The Senior General continued to say that currently, the country is walking on the path of multi-party democratic system, and it is necessary to practise the genuine, disciplineflourishing democracy. According to the history, all need to build the Union based on democracy and federalism. There are many countries practising the federalism across the world, and it means living in unity as Unions. Military leaders need to make studies for having knowledge and outlook about legal affairs.

Hluttaw is a legislative body but it is not administrative body. The administrative body as well as judicial body is separately formed by the government. It is designed to shape three main branches. With regard to the legislation, the representatives were selected for performing legislation via the people, and these representatives must be genuine. The legislative body must draw the laws themselves or in cooperation with relevant ministries but they don’t have authority to approve these laws. These laws can be approved by the Hluttaw on behalf of the people or voting through referendum in the entire nation. If drawing of the law is based on people’s desire, it is necessary to much regard and abide by them. So, if a law is enacted, it is necessary to take adequate time to consider such issue. Following the law is of importance in democracy, and as the people enact the law, everybody says no one is above the law.

Regarding a topic related to emphasizing measures to follow the law, the Senior General said: “If a law is enacted, it is necessary to clarify why does it need to enact such law. Each section of the law has relevant purpose. Explanations show the aims of sections from the law. These explanations are not involved in the law but in discussions in the background.

These explanations are approved. Such law is enacted due to these reasons. In fact, the law summarizes all things. But, its definitions express wide explanations. So, some controversial measures happen for the law, it is necessary to review the background measures. Anything cannot be defined as they like. It is necessary to review why did one write so. Moreover, some laws are expressed in Myanmar and some are translated in English. Whatever it maybe, Myanmar approves the law written in Myanmar language only.

So, we find some laws translated in English. You should understand so. Realization of the law in own idea may cause bad impacts rather than effectiveness. As the Tatmadaw is an armed organization, it needs to abide by the Constitution. So, we all need to follow all the existing laws, not beyond the 2008 Constitution.

The Constitution is the mother law for all laws. So, I’d like to note we all need to abide by the Constitution. If one does not follow the law, such law must be revoked. I mean if it is Constitution, it is necessary to revoke the Constitution. If one does not follow the law, the Constitution must be revoked. So, the 1947 Constitution was cancelled in the time of Revolutionary Council.

Likewise, the 1974 Constitution was revoked in the time of theState Law and Order Restoration Council. The 2008 Constitution is effective. I’d like to note that it is a very important basic factor in the politics. Everybody should not act negligence. So, you all have knowledge about legal affairs as well as outlook about legal affairs.”

Speaking about economic outlook, the Senior General said: “Supposing our country has no resources or basic necessities for example, we need to have four essentials if we want to see development. First, we can’t do anything without electricity. We cannot do anything for national development or economic growth.

If we do, we will have difficulties. Cost will be enormous but it will not be effective either. Second, we need to have good communications. Third, transportation must be good. Roads must be good. Fourth, we must have good human resources. Education and health must be good. Without these four essentials, the State must struggle for economy. As I have said, we establish a business. Without human resources, electricity, what will we do? Without good transportation for our products and raw materials, what will we do? Unless we provide information and data to have market, what will we do? National economy is impossible if we don’t have these four essentials. In human resource sector also, we must have intellectuals and intelligentsia and able workforce. This is why health is crucial. We can help improve our economy only if we can produce able and healthy human resources. We need to always consider these four essentials when we do business.”

The Senior General went on to say that economy must develop as it is the driving force of the country. Since the country exercises market economy, the background situation of the country must be known for successful management. As 70 percent of the population are living in rural areas, it is necessary to engage mainly in agriculture and livestock breeding, thereby contributing to national economy.

In so doing, conventional ways must be turned into modern ones. Meanwhile, the situation of both local and foreign markets must be known. If products have the same quality, price must be lower. If prices are the same, our products must be better in quality. Only with sound economy, will the living standard improve. Thus, efforts must be made to improve the economic outlook and business management.

Speaking from administrative prospect, the Senior General said: “When it comes to the executive sector, we need those who are capable of ruling the country with their knowledge and vision. They need to follow and respect the laws and disciplines. In that sector, an administrative body plays a key role.

Yet, it is the rule of law that controls administration. Who enforces the rule of law? The administrative body does in accord with the law. There are police forces. It is the duty of the administrative body and police to enforce the law and ensure stability.

In this regard, police forces must be capable. We need a police force able to manage well. Police and administrative organizations deal directly with the public. Others do not directly concern it. For example, agricultural organizations or livestock breeding organizations may have links with relevant organizations.

However, township, ward and village administrative bodies have to deal directly with people of all strata. There are three organizations that have to deal with people from all walks of life. They are administrative, police and health organizations. For health organizations, they have to deal with all people, regardless of class, gender and age. You must know this. Other organizations will go as the way they are with relevant bodies. I must say that it is necessary to improve the capacity of police forces. They must try to become the ones among the public and accepted by the public.”

The Senior General continued to say that protecting the lives and property of the people closely, the police force plays an important role in administrative affairs. Therefore, it is necessary to take measures to nurture competent members of the police and police units that can effectively perform duties for the rule of law and security.

Concerning the defence outlook, the Senior General said, “From the defence perspective, it is necessary for the Tatmadaw to safeguard Our Three Main National Causes as an efficient and capable armed force. Therefore, it is important to nurture human resources in building an efficient and capable Tatmadaw, which mainly involves training. In addition, capabilities of an individual cannot be built overnight. It takes time for the Tatmadaw to enhance capabilities to build an efficient and capable Tatmadaw. It is necessary for all to grasp the trend on how to enhance and acquire all defence capabilities. You cannot defend the country just by making roars, echoing other’s voices and shouting ‘Hey! Hey!’. You must possess manpower to defend your country because you cannot do so with your voice. I will repeat it. You cannot defend your country by shouting roars, voices or words. You must carry out the pragmatic defence of the country.”

In conclusion, the Senior General touched on political, economic, administrative and defence outlooks, saying “I would like to urge you all to perform duties after thinking comprehensively, to value yourselves, to enhance your values and to try to be disciplined and orderly persons. How can you serve the interests of the country? You could serve the interests of the country from wherever you were even before you started performing your duties in the Tatmadaw. You must always bear in mind the philosophy of serving the interests of the country. If so, it is worth training for you.”

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