The Yangon Secretariat, a colonial-era landmark located on the Thein Phyu Road in Yangon, has finally been opened for visitors, said U Phyo Min Thein, the Chief Minister of Yangon Region.
He made the remarks at the Yangon Expo-2019, held to promote the tourism sector in the region.
“People are interested in visiting Yangon’s Secretariat office because they want to know the history of the building. So, we have upgraded the old Secretariat office. Now, we are ready to welcome people looking to visit and observe the old Secretariat,” said the chief minister.
The old secretariat building, also known as the Prime Minister’s Office, was built in the late 19th century, and is more than 120 years old. Standing at the heart of the city, the elegant Victorian-style building served as the seat of government for the British in Myanmar until the country’s independence in 1948. The historic building was also the site where Bogyoke Aung San and six cabinet ministers were assassinated by political rivals on 19 July, 1947. Now, the Yangon region government has upgraded the building to attract local and foreign visitors. Currently, souvenir shops, a coffee shop, and an art gallery have been opened at the Secretariat. There are plans to open more galleries and shops at the site. The Secretariat will be opened to visitors from 9 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. daily. Visitors are allowed to observe the ground and first floors free of charge. If they want to explore other restricted areas, they will have to pay an admission fee, which has been fixed at K3,000 for locals, K1,000 for local students, US$10 (K,15,000) for foreigners, and $5 (K8,000) for foreign minors aged under 12. Local and foreign minors under four years old are allowed to visit the areas free of charge. Guides have been commissioned to explain the history of the building. At present, more than 400-500 visitors are coming to the old Secretariat office every day. —Myint Maung
(Translated by Hay Mar)