Villagers claim crimes covered up by officials

Dec 11, 2007 (DVB), Taung Twin Gyi township residents are angry that local authorities have ordered police to stop investigating crimes reportedly committed by government supporters following two incidents in the area.

Villagers have claimed that township Peace and Development Council chairman U Khin Maung Oo was responsible for the cover-ups in the villages in Taung Twin Gyi township, Magwe division.

In one case, U Hla Myint and Daw Ahmar Sein were robbed at their house near Chaung Nat village in Taung Twin Gyi township on 8 July, allegedly by local Union Solidarity and Development Association members.

The couple reported the robbery to the Sat Thwar village police station, who began an investigation.

However, local residents have claimed that before the investigation was finished, local USDA officers intervened and paid off the police officers to close the case.

Another incident involved the former chairman of Sat Thwar village PDC U Thaung Myint, who is currently the USDA and Swan Arr Shin chairman in the village.

During his time as village PDC chairman, U Thaung Myint is reported to have seized wood from illegal woodcutters and sold it off for his own profit.

Villagers were angered by this and reported the chairman to the same police station.

The case began to be investigated by the forestry department and police officials but then the Taung Twin Gyi PDC chairman intervened and ordered the police station to stop pursuing the case.

Chaung Nat villager U Than Tun and ex-soldier U Soe Naing sent a letter of complaint to the divisional PDC chairman on 14 November and further copies of the letter to the divisional judge, police chief and forestry chairman, and also to central divisional military commander general Ye Myint.

They have so far received no response to the letter.

Reporting by Aye Nai

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