A Naypyidaw schoolteacher has alleged that the Ministry of Education forced her to retire after she attended the 25th anniversary ceremony for the 8-8-88 student uprising.
Speaking to DVB, Soe Soe Khaing said she was forced into retirement for three reasons: having contact with a political organisation; taking leave without permission; and travelling a long distance without informing the headmaster.
“I don’t want any other employee to have to go through this,” said Soe Soe Khaing, a high school teacher from Zabuthiri township with 18 years’ experience.
Soe Soe Khaing joined with thousands of other people from across Burma on 8 August by observing a commemoration ceremony in Rangoon for the victims of a bloody military crackdown in 1988 when hundreds, some say thousands, of protestors were killed.
However, Wai Lin Oo, a representative of the Ministry of Education, denied the decision to give the teacher retirement was related to the 8-8-88 “Silver Jubilee” in Rangoon.
“We were concerned because she took leave without permission,” he said. “How can she just disappear when she is supposed to be on duty?”
But Mya Aye, an 88 Generation Students group leader, sided with the teacher and said that the ministry’s decision was “ugly”.
“Forcing a schoolteacher into retirement due to the fact that she attended the Silver Jubilee ceremony was a very ugly thing to do and certainly inappropriate,” he said. “The 8-8-88 ceremony was not held by any one political party but was a momentous occasion in Burmese history that drew together people from all over the country.”