Govt minister joins ILO-CHRO training
22 January 2015 — State Minister of Forestry and Mines Kyaw Ngein attended on behalf of the State chief minister the last day of a three-day training in ‘forced labour’ in Hakha, Chin State.
The Chin minister indicated that Chief Minister Hung Ngai had sent him to observe the training jointly organized from 20 to 22 January by the Chin Human Rights Organization and the ILO (International Labour Organization) with the Ministry of Labour.
During the training, he urged the participants to work hard for the development of Chin State, adding: “It’s great to have training like this. You can discuss any issues openly and freely.”
When asked about cases related to land confiscation in Chin State, he beat about the bush saying he had given money to villagers as a form of compensation if he had come across the situation.
The training covered various issues related to forced labour including ‘contract farming’, an agricultural deal between the government and companies.
Piyamal Pichaiwongse, deputy liaison officer of the ILO Liaison Office in Burma, said that the central government should revisit their policies on ‘contract farming’ which mainly focuses on benefits to companies and does not work well for public purposes.
Ling Kee, a Kanpetlet participant, said: “This training opens our eyes and helps us to understand what we didn’t think of as a form of forced labour. Now that we will go back to our places and share with the people, I really hope it will be very helpful.”
Two participants each from eight out of nine townships in Chin State and Kalay of Sagaing region as well as Hung Kee, deputy director of the State Labour Department, attended the training.
Salai Lian Bawi Thang, of the Chin Human Rights Organization, said: “We are pleased to have members of the ILO and the Ministry of Labour providing such training for the Chin. We hope that it will make a valuable contribution toward ending forced labour not only in Chin State but in the whole country.”
In 2012, Burma signed an agreement with the ILO to eradicate forced labour from the country by 2015.#