Pay rise for Shwedagon police

Dec 7, 2007 (DVB), Police officers assigned to Shwedagon pagoda have been given a salary increase to counter discontent among the officers following the crackdown on protestors in September.

The police officers, who work under the pagoda authorities, were awarded a pay rise from 25,000 kyat a month to 40,000 kyat, according to a course close to the pagoda authorities.

About 50 Shwedagon police officers took part in the crackdown on protests at the pagoda on 26 September, but most of these were reportedly soldiers dressed in pagoda police uniforms.

The pay increase is intended as compensation from the authorities for the police officers, who felt that they had gained a bad reputation for their part in the crackdown.

They also felt that had suffered from the actions of soldiers posing as police officers at the pagoda who beat up protestors.

In addition to the pay rise, the pagoda authorities have also increased staffing levels from just under 80 officers to more than 200 since the demonstrations.

Reporting by Naw Say Phaw

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