Tue 29 May 2007
Filed under: Inside Burma,News
Six staff members of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Chin state, Myanmar were suspended in March for being involved in corruption.
Mr. Stevan Van Bik, director of UNDP project in Chin state, was said to have dismissed six UNDP staff in Hakha, Thantlang and Falam Township as they were allegedly into corrupt practices.
“We have only heard that they were suspended for corruption. I don’t know what kind of corruption they were involved in,” said a local in Thantlang.
The suspended UNDP staff members include Pu Ai Van, Pu Pho Cing, Pi Sui Rem, Pi Parvang. The names of two more could not be ascertained.
UNDP workers in Chin state get between US $ 150 to 200 per month as basic salary. They also receive traveling allowance.
Health, education, water supply, poultry farm and agricultural farm projects are being run under UNDP programmes in some villages of Chin state.
Recently, the UNDP selected around 15 villages for the project. Locals from each village are said to have approached UNDP for some projects to be conducted in their villages by paying money or giving domestic animals to UNDP staff.
The volume of UNDP projects are allotted to villages in keeping with the amount of money or domestic animals they give as bribe.
“The underdeveloped villages are put on top priority for the UNDP projects. But some villagers bribe to win the project. It doesn’t mean that all those who give money are given the projects. It depends on how much they can bribe,” a local from Chin state said.
Therefore, UNDP employees take advantage from such competition among the people. It has led to more corruption among workers and the project fails due to misuse of money.
From 1990 onwards some of the UNDP projects such as water supply, health care and education began to be conducted in Chin state.
This is the first time UNDP staff members in Chin state have been dismissed for corruption.