The press conference on the third-year journey of the Union Civil Service Board, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of International Cooperation, and the Union Attorney-General Office answered to reporters in the Ministry of Information’s meeting hall in Nay Pyi Taw.
Union Civil Service Board member
U Saw Valentine, a member, said the Union Civil Service Board are now only allowing civil servants who have passed the screening test to go to the next round of interview so that they can find the right person for the right place in union ministries and organizations.
He said they upload video files of the screening test on their website (www.ucsb.gov.mm) and Facebook page (Union Civil Service Board Myanmar) so that people can gain better knowledge of the process. He said they also upload job advertisements, the roll number and candidate results of the screening test, and the list of chosen candidates.
U Saw Valentine said UCSB issued 4 job advertisements in the third-year period for 642 vacant positions in 20 union-level ministries and organizations. He said there were 8,601 applicants and from that number 2,183 passed the screening test, 611 passed the written exam at the next stage, and 593 passed the mental health assessment and interview process. He added that they performed mental health assessments for 715 staff from the Union Supreme Court, Union Attorney-General Office, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the General Administration Department at their request.
The UCSB verified 8,296 experienced staff for promotion, 58 staff with less experience for promotion on special criteria, and 27 staff for promotion on special criteria despite not meeting set education standards.
The UCSB received lists of individual assessments for 3,932 directors and 5,779 deputy directors-general from 48 ministries and government organizations, said U Saw Valentine, adding that they have accepted a waiting list for 2,258 directors and 2,793 deputy directors-general.
He said they have adapted the curricula of the central institutes of civil service to be more learner-centered and problem-centered, on the suggestions of the advisory board, so that graduating civil servants will be capable of working in line with the policies set by the Union. He added that the CICS’ have trained 13,177 trainees between 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019.
U Saw Valentine said the Second Bill Amending the Union Civil Service Board Law was ratified on 17 March 2019 with Pyidaungsu Hluttaw Announcement No. 38/2019. He said the Second Bill Amending the Civil Servant Law was ratified with Section-16 of the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw Law on 13 June 2018, which amended three sections of the law.
U Saw Valentine said this amendment will ensure civil service personnel and public servants will be categorized differently with their own unique duties and responsibilities. He said this will also ensure decisions for salaries, fees, pensions and entitlements are clear-cut for everyone.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of International Cooperation
Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of International Cooperation U Myint Thu said:
Our ministries have been practicing an “active and independent foreign policy” based the aspirations of the State and the “Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence”.
We were also able to improve and consolidate our Strategic Partnership relationship with China; a Comprehensive Cooperative Partnership – CCP with Vietnam; and achieve the level of Natural Strategic Partners with Thailand. The State Counsellor also went on official visits to Laos, Thailand, China, United States, Japan, Singapore, Italy, Vatican, Britain, Belgium, India, and Australia. During the third year, she went on friendly visits to Vietnam, Japan, Singapore and Nepal to attend summits of ASEAN and regional organizations.
During the three year period of the tenure of the new Government, we were able to promote and elevate the friendly relations and cooperation between Myanmar and countries such as Singapore, India, Laos, the Philippines, Mongolia, Cambodia and Vietnam which sent Presidents, State Leaders and the Pope on friendly visits. Countries such as China, Italy, Canada, Japan, India, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Australia, Serbia, Britain, Hungary, United States, Norway, Ukraine, Luxembourg, Netherlands, France, Czech Republic, Turkey, EU, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Malaysia sent high-level delegations on friendly visits totalling more than 80 visits.
We were able to successfully arrange these visits and thus greatly enhance and promote bi-lateral and regional level relations. In addition, we were able to make concerted efforts to promote the socio-economic development of Myanmar and the people and obtain development assistance, technical assistance and financial assistance.
We are participating actively in regional organizations such as ASEAN, BIMSTEC, Greater Mekong Cooperation Scheme, ACMECS – Ayeyawady-Chao Phraya-Mekong Economic Cooperation Strategy, Mekong-Lacang Cooperation, Mekong-Japan, Mekong-Republic of Korea Cooperation Fund, and the LMI – Lower Mekong Initiative.
We are making increasing efforts to establish diplomatic relations with new partner countries to promote friendship with the countries of the world in the international arena for providing mutual help and support increasingly. Within the three year period of our government, we were able to establish diplomatic relations with seven new partner countries. Out of 193 countries of the world, we have established diplomatic relations with 121 countries. To promote friendship with African countries, we are in the process of establishing diplomatic relations with the Republic of Benin, Congo Republic and the Republic of Togo.
To improve our contacts and relations with countries in Latin America and the Caribbean region, and for countries in Middle and Eastern Europe, we are in the process of establishing diplomatic missions in Havana (Cuba), and Prague (the Czech Republic). We are working to open these diplomatic missions in 2019.
Since the breaking out of the conflicts between the two communities in Rakhine State in June 2012, the issue of Rakhine State has attracted greater international attention and found its way into the resolutions on Myanmar adopted by the UN General Assembly and the Human Rights Council. The Government has therefore accorded high priority to resolve the issue of the Rakhine State ever since it took office.
With regard to the formation of the Fact Finding Mission (FFM) on Myanmar, we have stated our position loud and clear, right from the time of the adoption of the resolution to establish the FFM citing the facts that there was no transparency in the process; its mandate was also biased and could pose an impediment to the efforts made by the government in resolving the issue; it would not be in conformity with the real situation at the ground level. For these reasons we made our position clear that the mandate given to the FFM was unacceptable to Myanmar. The Government’s clear position on the report of the FFM was also made known when its report came out.
When I attended the high-level segment of the Human Rights Council meeting held on 26 February 2019 in Geneva, I stated again in my speech why we cannot accept the repot of the FFM. Whenever the draft resolutions on Myanmar were taken up at the UN General Assembly or Human Rights Council, the Myanmar delegations led by the Myanmar Permanent Representatives in New York and in Geneva spared no efforts to defend their position constantly by calling for a vote or by delivering their position statements to make our position known.
At the same time we have sought the assistance of those friendly countries who understand the complexities and challenges facing Myanmar, and we are making concerted efforts to deliver improvements on the ground and to start repatriation process to take back those who could be verified as former residents and free from crimes in accord with the bilateral arrangements reached between Myanmar and Bangladesh.
Union Attorney-General Office
Daw Nu Nu Yin, Permanent Secretary of the UAGO, said the Formation of Law Offices scrutinized 181 laws, 257 bylaws and 43 Constitutional matters, and also translated 114 documents.
Through the past year, the UAGO has reviewed and discussed over 181 draft laws from the ministries as well as 257 rules, regulations and notifications. The office also gave consultation on 688 international projects, 1097 on local and foreign investments and other 527 on law-related matters. The UAGO launched the Strategic Plan 2015-19 entitled “Moving Forward to the Rule of Law” in 2015 and we are now in the final year of the plan.
There are arrangements to review and discuss its advantages and disadvantages for another 5 year plan. The Plan will continue to push the office to draft and vet laws that serve the Myanmar people and uphold the existing ones such as prosecution under fair trials and accountability of the office.
In regards to the public’s accessibility for the laws, the public laws, notification, rules and procedures as well as public cases in the court are now available on our public website. With the widespread use of phones to access the internet, we had over 200,000 readers within a year with 46% from Yangon.
Daw Nu Nu Yin said they have been active in publishing books regarding advice on upholding and practicing rule of law. There were also rule of law workshops held in collaboration with the UAGO and the Denmark Embassy such as International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) and Universal Periodic Review (UPR). We were also able to publish a Guideline on Scrutinizing Joint Venture Agreement and Land Lease Agreement. Research committees have also been formed as well for further publications in the multiple research journals.
She said the Myanmar Law Information System website (www.mlis.gov.mm) was successfully launched on 24 May 2018 and is constantly updated with the latest legal information.
The Department of Prosecution represents the Republic of the Union of Myanmar in criminal cases in the Supreme Court. If the Republic is involved in the case, we are involved. The department also reviews various laws that comes up from the respective parliaments on whether or not they are fit for consideration. With the help of USAID, there are plans to digitalize our system and dockets.
There are also workshops and collaborative training with other departments such as the Border Police, Myanmar Police Force, the Anti-trafficking Police Force and other law officers. Cooperation Guidelines have been written and distributed throughout so the teams are most efficient in working together and prosecuting criminals. The Fair Trial Standards document was also published on Feb 20, 2018 for various levels of law officers to be familiar with fair trials and right judgment and procedures during cases. Afterwards, the officials replied to questions from the media.—Kyaw Myo Tun, Nandar Han (Translated by GNLM)