MoSWRR holds 2020 International Day of Older Persons

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Union Minister Dr Win Myat Aye delivers speech at the ceremony of 2020 International Day of Older Persons in Nay Pyi Taw on 1 October 2020. Photo: MNA

The Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement organized International Day of Older Persons via videoconferencing yesterday morning.
The event was attended by Union Minister for Labour, Immigration and Population U Thein Swe, Union Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement Dr Win Myat Aye, Union Minister for Ethnic Affairs Nai Thet Lwin, Deputy Ministers, country representatives of UN organizations, the elderly persons and the officials of relevant departments.
Union Minister Dr Win Myat Aye made an opening speech at the ceremony, saying that Myanmar is a member of international community and the ceremony was held with special recognition for the older persons that they contributed to the society and are still benefiting in some ways in the current society.
The ceremony for International Day of Older Persons has been successively holding in Myanmar since 1999. The previous ceremonies were widely held in respective regions, states and districts including Nay Pyi Taw Council Area. However, it was held online this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Theme of this year’s International Day of Older Persons is “Pandemics: Do They Change How We Address Age and Ageing.”
The Union Minister continued saying that the COVID-19 disease can be infected regardless of races, religions, genders and ages and it is a challenge especially for the elderly persons in vulnerable group.
Although the older persons have to stay at home, they can be infected from others who go out and they can suffer more from the diseases if they have some chronic diseases that weaken their immune system. So, all the people in any age groups should participate in fighting the disease.
The ministry appreciates the human rights of every individual and is working to provide social protection services for all age group of people including the elderly while the country is implementing for human rights affairs, democratic affairs and the rule of law.
As the country agrees with the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing, it will carry out for advancing health and well-being into old age.
The ministry also provides the normal social pension to the older persons once every three months even in COVID-19 period and contributed further assistance in July in 2020.
It also provided K30,000 cash assistance to the older person between 80 and 85 years old under COVID-19 Economic Relief Plan in September 2020. It provided K1 million each to the oldest grandpa and grandma in Myanmar like the previous years.
The government implemented the national social pension in 2017-2018FY for income security of the older persons and it will continue offering other services in coming financial years depending on the budget status.
Currently, the “Inclusive Self-Help Groups”, which include new generations, women and people with disabilities, are organized in villages and will be led by the government to offer healthcare services to the older persons and people of any age.
There are 216 Inclusive Self-Help Groups and they were provided with K1million fund of the Department of Social Welfare in 2019-2020FY. The officials will organize more 400 groups in 2020-2021FY.
The Union Minister also called on the older persons to prove that they support their families, villages, wards, the country and society by sharing their knowledge and life experience for the young people which are precious things for the new generations.
The government will create opportunities for the older persons to share their valuable life experience and will apply the abilities of older persons in building the country while making efforts to protect the elderly persons against COVID-19 and to ensure their safety, the Union Minister said.
Then, the message of United Nations Secretary-General was read by UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator of UNDP Mr Ola Almgrem.
The healthcare and rights of older persons were shown in the video clip and the ceremony came to a close.—MNA (Translated by Khine Thazin Han)

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