Soe Htike Aung
Migrant workers will be housed in the relevant departments as instructed by the government, and the companies and departments will oversee entry and exit across the state boundery, according to township general administrators.
U Yan Naing Maung, General Administrator of Shardaw Township, said, “The main thing is that we have to keep the labor lists for each township as instructed by the government. Then they will be allowed to enter and exit across the state by their respective companies. These are the situations that the relevant departments have to do. We will abide by that policy.”
On December 8, 2020, seventeen migrant workers from Bago Division and Yangon Division were tested as test kits at the Quarantine Center of the Deemawso Agricultural Science School and confirmed as COVID positive.
A local resident in Maing Tham Village, the anonymous person, said some locals in Bawlakhae Township were also worried about the influx of migrant workers.
“They did not tell the village about their entry. The company brought those workers for mining their stones,” he said.
Locals in Maing Tham village in Bawlakhae Township were worried because the road construction workers did not inform them.
“It is true that the villagers are worried. They told (the workers) not to come into the village because the villagers were worried. They did not take a shower in the village though,” U Yu Lwin from Maing Tham village said.
U Myo Thant, the Administrator of Bawlakhae Township, responded upon the concern of villagers, “68 people have already left. They entered into Maing Tham Village. And, as there are rules that they have to follow regarding the COVID directed by the state government, the group came from other states and divisions according to those rules.
When they arrived at the Shan-Kayah border, they were carried by a relief car. They have been in Quaratine Center before arrived here. Then they got a medical check-up. And then they furthered their journey only after the test results are negative,” he said.
The Kayah State government has issued five guidelines for migrant workers.
The statement called on the state to use local workers to carry out the construction work; the (companies) are not allowed to bring workers from the designated townships with “Stay at Home” into the state; if they want to bring the workers from townships not designated with “Stay at Home”, they must seek the approval from the Kayah State government. When workers arrive in the state, they have to be at the relevant Quarantine Centers and check for Covid-19. Then the cost of workers in Quarantine Center will have to be paid by the companies who won the tinder. Besides, the submission of workers list who are working in construction sites will also have to be submitted to the relevant township administration office, township health ministry, winning bidder, and the Department of Workshops and Labor Inspection.
U Myo Thant, the Administrator of Bawlakhae Township, said, “As the owner of the company you brought in, make sure you take responsibility for it. I will take action if others report they leave. It is a situation where he could be prosecuted according to the law. If you do not agree, do not bring them. I negotiated everything at the bottom, and they came as they agreed to follow with the rules,” he said.
The Kayah State government released its statement and sent to all township administrators in the state, and it was instructed to comply from December 9, 2020.