Denying use of farmland for other purposes without permit helping uphold rule of law

With higher demand for living quarters created by the increasing population, online sales of housing plots carved out on farmland is widespread across the country, highlighting the dark side of our land management efforts.
Union Minister for Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation Dr Aung Thu, in his capacity as the chairman of the Central Body of Farmland Management, has disclosed the situation on the ground at the meeting of the body recently, sending messages to the regional and state sub-bodies and authorities to take effective actions against such practices.
It is required to speed up our efforts to eliminate the unlawful use of farmland for other purposes such as carving out plots for housing on farmlands and their sale is in contravention of the Farmland Law.
The situation demands us to raise public awareness about farmland management to make clear the farmland management law among the people so that they can not fall prey to the illegal trading.
The law prohibits the utilization of farmland for other purposes, and strict actions were taken against those who violated the rules. Besides, farmland cannot be sold, pawned, or leased to foreigners without the permission of the State.
In the past, using farmland for other purposes was a common practice in Myanmar.
To effectively prevent the illegal distribution of farmland, corruption must be rooted out. Or, the situation will remain difficult for the authorities.
Those departmental officials who have the authority to manage the farmland are obliged to enforce the law effectively and settle cases without bias as they play a role in implementing the rule of law.
The Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation; Ministry of Home Affairs; and other related municipal organisations should cooperate to ensure the regulations and procedures under the law are followed.
To put an end to illegal squatting, including settlement in forest reserves and construction of infrastructure on farmlands, three stakeholders — those who make the laws, those who enforce them, and those who are obliged to follow the laws — need to cooperate with each other.

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