Water shortages hit Shan State

More than 100 villages in southern Shan State are suffering from drinking water shortages and need help with water donations, according to villagers.

Taungyoe Youth Association from Kalaw Township requested aid for about 50 villages in the township which was suffering from water shortages.

The association said it made water donations jointly with donors last week in villages near Latmaungkway in the township as ponds and wells had dried up this month.

Explosions rock Shan State

Explosions occurred in Lashio and Kunlong townships in northern Shan State on Friday night and Saturday morning.

Two heavy shells exploded on February 19 near three express buses at the union highway near Hopake village in Lashio, injuring three people who were treated at Lashio People's Hospital.

Two mines exploded under a drain on the Chin Shwe Haw-Kunlong Road in Kunlong Township on early February 20. The explosion damaged the road which was closed off.

Chin gather for national day

Chin State should head towards democracy, the new Speaker of the state parliament, Zo Bwe, told a gathering to mark Chin National Day. 

Unseasonal heat set to continue

Temperatures of 37 degree Celsius are being reported in Yangon, 2 to 4 degrees above the average temperature, according to the Meteorology and Hydrology Department (MHD).

“Temperatures will soar. Myanmar will be record its hottest ever temperatures this hot season,” said Dr Kyaw Moe Oo, director-general of MHD.

He said average temperature this month in the north had been 20 to 24 degrees, between 35 and 38 degrees in the central regions and 36 to 39 degrees in the south.

Thai TV crew banned from power plant site

Nation TV from Thailand has been banned from filming in Lot Lot village, Myeik Township in Tanintharyi Region, where a coal-fired power plant is planned.

The Nation was documenting beautiful areas of Myeik and interviewed residents about the power plant but the crew was stopped from filming at the site. 

“All photography is banned. Our manager Zin Mar Win phoned to order me not to give any information. And she told me to say she was attending a meeting,” said a backhoe driver.

Magway exam papers leaked

The final Grade 5 and 9 exams in Magway Region contained leaked questions, sparking anger from staff and parents. 

The leaks on social media occurred in history, geography and English on four consecutive days.

The authorities are investigating a photo print shop owner in Magway's Yankin market and a private school teacher in Yanmyoloan ward.

Farming experts fear drought

Drought is looming across the whole country due to the effects of El Niño, warn agriculture experts.  

“El Niño could dry up our water resources. If one degree is added, rivers will dry up. If two degrees are added, ponds and wells will go and if there is a three degrees rise, underground water resources will dry up. Agricultural production could suffer badly. People and livestock could also encounter drinking water shortages across the country,” agriculturalist Dr Tun Win told The Daily Eleven.

Inle Lake dries up

Villagers say Inle Lake's tributaries, which they use for transport, are evaporating.

Rivers to Haeyar and Paypingone villages are almost unusable or dried to a few feet.

Residents at the iconic destination said that makeshift preventive measures were holding back a little water, which would disappear when temperatures rose next month.

Exam department to probe leaked papers

An official from the Department of Myanmar Examinations said an investigation would be launched into the alleged leak of the eighth standard examination papers this academic year. 

Social media and education sources said the exam papers held at a regional level had been leaked in various places across the country. 

Public hospitals on heatstroke alert

The public hospitals throughout the country are preparing to treat heatstroke patients due the sudden temperature rises that are being forecast, according to Dr Aye Ko Ko, the head of Yangon General Hospital (YGH).

“Since El Niño is expected this year, temperatures will get higher than usual. Our Department of Medical Care and the Public Health Department under the Ministry of Health will educate the people about preventive measures against the heat,” said Aye Ko Ko.