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Published on Tuesday, 19 February 2013 21:43
The investigation commissions established to look into the conflict in Rakhine State and the controversial Letpadaungtaung copper mine are coming under increasing fire for their alleged lack of transparency and delays in releasing their findings.
The commissions were established to investigate the roots of the conflicts and propose solutions, but neither one has released a final report yet.
“People are losing interest,” said Ko Jimmy, a leader of the 88 Generation Students Group said. “When the commissions were first formed people were interested in them, but they don’t seem to be interested in the investigations,” he added.
“The commissions need to be more transparent,” Dr. Yan Myo Thein said. “The people won’t trust the commissions if there is no transparency. The commissions need to constantly update people on their progress through the media,” the well-known writer said.
The commissions were formed following the communal violence in Rakhine and the crackdown on the protest against the Letpadaungtaung copper mine in Sagaing Region.
The Rakhine Investigation Commission was formed on August 17 last year and has not issued a report
yet. It was supposed to submit its final report to the president in the last week of November but asked for an extension until the end of next month.
The Letpadaungtaung Investigation Commission was formed on December 1 last year. It released statements on its investigation four times in December and three times last month and issued an interim report.
A resident of Monywa town in Sagaing said people were very interested in the commissions but had been kept in the dark about what they were doing.
Khin San Hlaing, a member of the Letpadaungtaung Investigation Commission, said the final report would be submitted to the president at the end of this month and the public would be informed about its content.
Dr. Aye Maung, a member of the Rakhine Investigation Commission, said it was not appropriate to compare the two commissions due to the complexity of the conflict in Rakhine State. “The Rakhine conflict is not the same as Letpadaungtaung where people focused on one problem protested. In Rakhine there is an ethnic dispute between two groups. The ethnic conflict erupted twice so we requested that the deadline for submitting the final report be extended to March 31,” Aye Maung said.