Dear ethnic brethren in Kayin State,
I am delighted with the opportunity to send a message to the 61st anniversary Kayin State Day, which falls on today, the 7th November. Today is an auspicious occasion for my indigenous brethren residing in Kayin State. On this auspicious Kayin State Day, I would like to wish not only the Kayin race but also all other indigenous races born within the union physical and mental well-being.
In establishment of states and divisions after attainment of independence, the then parliament considered the designation of the areas inhabited by Karen people as Karen State, and Papun area in Salween district was designated as Karen State according to the 1951 Constitution Amendment Act. Karen State was then extended to include Kyain Seikkyi, Kawkareik, Hlaingbwe, Pa-an and Thandaung townships under the 1952 Karen State Extension Act. Again on 1st march, 1960, Myawady was designated as a township and Karen State was constituted with the following seven townships—Pa-an, Papun, Hlaingbwe, Thandaung, Kawkareik, Kyain Seikkyi and Myawady.
In fact, 7th November is the day on which the then president signed the 1951 Constitution Amendment Act, which designated the Salween District, and commencing from 1955, Karen State Day is annually celebrated, and this year is the 61st anniversary.
Retrospecting the history, we will see that we have lost independence as our motherland was invaded by the colonialist imperialists. And in the aftermath of independence, our brethren were divided, causing conflicts for a very long time, resulting in Myanmar lagging behind her neighbouring countries in all aspects like politics, economics and social etc. Such being the case, our government is holding the Union Peace Conference — the 21st century Panglong—to effectuate national reconciliation and restore peace within the union which has long been aspired by the indigenous people.
Dear ethnic brethren in Kayin State,
[quote font=”helvetica” font_size=”18″ bgcolor=”#dedee2″ color=”#030000″ bcolor=”#0528f9″ arrow=”yes”]Lack of trust between and among the national brethren has caused armed conflicts, thereby resulting in slow growth of Kayin State. In addition to losses and damages caused by the battles, the future of successive generations have also been lost, which overwhelms us with sorrow.[/quote]
Out brothers and sisters inhabiting the Kayin State have got through an ordeal for a very long time. Lack of trust between and among the national brethren has caused armed conflicts, thereby resulting in slow growth of Kayin State. In addition to losses and damages caused by the battles, the future of successive generations have also been lost, which overwhelms us with sorrow. Today, the indigenous armed organizations within the Kayin State have come to co-operate with us by participating in the union peace process with the result that the people in this state can now enjoy the fruits of peace with new development opportunities available now. It is quite heartening to look forward to Kayin State being busy with factories and mills instead of hearing the reports of the gun. I am delighted to hear the good news that preparations are being made to hold the Kayin-State-level political dialogues very soon.
It is specially important for all indigenous people to have a level playing ground in building up of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar to become a peaceful, developed, democratic federal union. We firmly believe that we can lay down the basic principles for building up of our aspired democratic federal union through political dialogues, which seek peaceful solutions to the political problems of the union via discussions and negotiations.
With this message, I would like to urge Kayin brethren, who have already trodden on the path of peace with courage and wisdom to continue to exert concerted effort in unison for national reconciliation, union peace and national modernization and development.
(Sd) Htin Kyaw
(Unofficial translation by the Global New Light of Myanmar)