“Local Development Projects at Controlled Areas are Operated Based on the Negotiation Agreement”

Soe Htike Aung

U Kyaw Thu Aung

In 2020-2021 fiscal year, there are over K3.4 billion budget for rural development projects in Kayah State, and we would like to share the conversations interviewed to U Kyaw Thu Aung, the State Director of Department of Rural Development, related to the progress what they are conducting regarding to rural development project in Kayah State.

Q – What are your department conducting regarding to state development projects?
Ans – We provide vocational trainings and implement village development projects (VDP). We are also disbursing loans to implement emerald green projects. We are also working together with Community Driven Development (CDD) who cooperate with public.

Q- What challenges do you have when you implement your development projects in those remote areas?
Ans- In our (7) township project areas, we conduct our activities in response to budget and local needs. As remote areas, we have the remote villages in Pharsaung Township, and the eastern and western part of Hpruso Township. All our staffs try their best implementing the activities in accordance with their duties in those areas. The 2020-21 fiscal budgets of Kayah State Department of Rural Development

Q- How are you doing your development project amid this outbreak of COVID-19?
Ans- Regarding to the construction project, we already instructed to all the construction companies partnered to Department of Rural Development since the beginning of April. We also informed them about the local law released in this pandemic period. Therefore, about 75% of our partner companies did not take any trips to other states during this Thingyan Festival. It means both the companies and workers did not travel outside. In my viewpoint, I see we don’t have so much impact on our construction projects as our activity is running and working within the workplace.

Q- What have your Rural Development Department supported for public related to Covid?
Ans- In rural area, we are using the method of go quick, inform quick, and return quick at the needed areas. We use the mask and cover for protection and try as much as we can to avoid from any touch. Our department has cooperated together with UNICEF and installed hand wash basins in regard of COVID-19 protection. The purpose of installing the basins is to raise public awareness to comply and be used to with washing hand habit and know the most effective method that hand wash is the best to prevent from Covid.

Q- In what trend have your department achieved related to the conducting development projects in our state?
Ans- It is hard for me to analyze and tell the achievement for the whole state. However, everyone can check and analyze on it. If we look at our state, it is smallest state in Myanmar. Besides, it is the least dense and least populated state. However, if we look at the state transportation sector, it is like we can compare well with other states. Moreover, if we look at the cleanness of the state, our Loikaw City won the ASEAN Clean Tourist City Award as well. In the so-called infrastructure…… sector, as you can see, we are distributing electricity through Law Pi Ta No.1,2,3 existed in our state, and – as my prediction- almost about 70% or 80% of locals with state have already accessed the electricity. I assume our state development condition is not underdeveloped as the rest areas are also going to be able to access the electricity. The projects which the Kayah State Department of Rural Development are implementing

Q- Is there any development projects cooperating with other community organizations?
Ans- Yes, we have. We are now working together with the World Bank on the Community Driving Development Project which we are implementing together with the Community Driving Development (CDD) Organization. World bank aids us organizing Township Multi-Stakeholder Review Meeting (MSR) with our Social Partners like CBO/CSOs annually. We usually conduct workshops and meeting with all our partners.

Q- In the state, there are some EAOs who haven’t signed the NCA. So, is everything fine implementing development project in the EAOs controlled areas?
Ans- If we view with our department condition, we may say we are cooperating well with the EAOs. Until now everything is going well. As we build partnership with CDD, we conduct our projects together at Pharsaung and Hpruso regions. Whenever we conduct in those controlled areas, we inform ahead to related organizations and negotiate to striving their understanding and acceptance upon the projects. Thus, we could implement our project with no obstacles. The Water Donation Record of Hpruso Township Department of Rural Development at Bi Hso Village, Hpruso Township, on 14.4.2020

Q- Is there anything you want to add?Ans- So far, the whole state might not be developed. In that case if we can cooperate and maintain together for state development with all people from this state’s core community organizations, CBOs, and villagers, I would like to give my comment that we could have the sustainable development projects. We are working hard as much as we can donating water to the villages facing water shortage in Kayah State. We start running this water donation project as of 2.3.2020 (March 2nd). According to the record until April 19, 2020, we could have donated to 16 villages, 87 times, totally 87,650 gallons.

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