Thu 15 Aug 2013
Filed under: Opinion
On March 30 2011, President Thein Sein took charge of the highest office in the country and started a five-year tenure alongside two Vice Presidents, 30 Ministries, Attorney General and Secretary. Now 29 months have passed and the President has completed the first half of his term.
If we review the structure of the government in the past 29 months, there has been mergers, bifurcation and creation of new Ministries. Similarly, we have witnessed resignation of a Vice President, resignation of Ministers and Deputy Ministers, and reshuffling of the Cabinet. Some of the most significant changes during the period was the resignation of Vice President Thiha Thura Tin Aung Myint Oo, resignation of Electric Power Minister Zaw Min and Telecommunication Minister Thein Tun, and replacement of Defence Minister Major Gen. Hla Min with Lt. Gen. Wei Lwin.
Likewise, we witnessed the transposition of the Information Minister Kyaw San to the Co-Operatives Ministry, the Labor Minister Aung Kyi to the Information Ministry and the Railway Minister Aung Min to the Presidential Office Minister. When the President took charge, there were only two Presidential Office Ministers namely Soe Maung and Thein Nyunt but now it had been expanded to six Presidential Office Ministers. However, Ministers from nine Ministries, namely Home Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Agriculture and Irrigation, Forest, Economics and Commerce, Transport, Education and Health have retained their positions.
With regard to the reform process, the President has repeatedly used the word irreversible. The aforementioned changes prove that he has been true to his word. On July 25 to mark the completion of half his term there was a reshuffling of 17 Cabinet Ministers. The President also complained on August 9 about the lack of administrative skills and transparency, rampant corruption and irresponsibility at a cabinet meeting with the Cabinet Ministers.
Furthermore, at the swearing-in ceremony of Deputy Governors of Central Bank of Myanmar held on August 14, the President warned his Cabinet Ministers of breach of duty, lack of morality, misconduct and corruption.
In the second half of his term, the President has been strengthened the government by appointing new Ministers and reshuffling Ministries to ensure there is no corruption and welfare of the people is addressed.
The government has also committed to provide adequate electricity supply, ensure clean and potable water supply, development of the agriculture sector, providing employment opportunities, development of small and medium scale industries, etc. The Cabinet Ministers must endeavor to complete their target tasks successfully in the remaining 30 months. They should always keep in mind that the country is lagging far behind and there is an acute need to develop transport, communication, education and health sectors.