Awareness: Burmese Election 2015 and Dos and Don’ts for Rohingya
By Rohingya Vision Team
The much-awaited Burmese (Myanmar) Election 2015 is due to take place tomorrow. The Rohingyas had the rights to take part in 2010 Election both as parliamentary candidates and voters. In fact, they had elected MPs both in the Union Parliaments and the State-Parliament. Unfortunately, the Burmese Government has violated yet another basic human right of the persecuted Rohingyas subjected to Genocide by stripping off their rights to participate in the general election.
It proves that the pseudo-civilian government has shown the signs of backsliding even in the little political reforms claimed to have made after 2010. Amidst all the political chaos and hopelessness in their future political roles in the country, they as well as other Muslim groups in Burma fear of the potential violence against them and becoming political scapegoats as a result of the vulnerable situation in the country.
There have been some dubious plots developing against Rohingyas since last few weeks.
#1 Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has diabolically asked International Media not to exaggerate Muslim problem in Burma even though the world now approves that Genocide is taking place against the Rohingyas and other Muslims in Burma. Meanwhile, USDP led government has excluded the Rohingyas from the Election as well.
#2 The Burmese government recruited 300 Rakhines as temporary police staffs in Maungdaw Township last week, which is thought to be a part of many plots reported to have been taking place against Rohingya ahead of the country’s controversial upcoming election.
The police recruits are mainly pick-pockets, hooligans etc deployed around Rakhine villages.
#3 Captain Tin Tun Oo, the in-charge of the Border Guard Police (BGP) in Nyaung Chaung village in Buthidaung Township, visited a few Rohingya villages – Pharung Chaung, Sein Nyein Pya and Phaya Pyin Aung Pha — along with his group on October 29. He gathered Islamic Religious Scholars, the Rohingya community representatives and some other Rohingyas during his visit on pretext of holding meetings with them.
However, he just took photographs of the people gathered and left saying “Thank you.” There should be some plots.
#4 Similarly, the military deployment in the ghettoed Rohingya area in Sittwe (Akyab) Township called ‘Aung Mingalar’ Quarter have been withdrawn and replaced with Security Forces known as ‘Hlun Hteins.’
Military mainly composed of Bama (Burmese) Buddhists, while Hlun Hteins are formed mainly with Rakhine Buddhists. And most of these Hlun Hteins secretly act upon the instructions by the Rakhine politicians with vested interest.
#5 The Rakhine Buddhist extremists killed a Rohingya youth in Mrauk-U (Fatthar Killa) Township on November 2, while they severely injured another young boy and abandoned him in the farmland thinking he was dead.
#6 On November 3, Daw Aye Nu Sein, Deputy Chairman of Arakan National Party (ANP), visited Maungdaw Township
Subsequently, 300 Rakhines in Maungdaw protested to dismiss U Khin Zaw Myint, a Kaman representing Maungdaw constituency, from running election for a State-Parliament Candidate. They also said that Kamans are not Citizens.
On the same night, during the curfew time post 12:00 midnight, three unknown stranger Rakhines with swords and weapons entered Maung Ni. However, the BGP didn’t stop them they knew about them.
#7 Hundreds of Rakhine Buddhist extremists gathered to attack Rohingya villages in Kyauktaw Township since November 4 night. They tried to attack Hondol and Nairong villages in Kyauktaw and Siddir Kul in Punna Gyun Township.
Later, a high-profile Rakhine politician Dr. Tun Aye was said to have been arrested for instigating the violence against the Rohingyas. He was said to plotted this violence in his political clash with USDP (Union Development and Solidarity) Party.
#8 Both ANP and USDP are threatening Hindu community in Maungdaw for votes.
USDP said give them money and clothes. And they said that they provided them ‘National Verification Card’ and with that, they were able to travel. If they don’t vote USDP, they will revoke the cards.
ANP said they were unable to afford money to give to them money as USDP did. ANP want them to vote for them. Else, they threatened that “USDP doesn’t own Rakhine state. If you don’t give vote to us, we won’t allow you to live on our land.”
Many such plots happened and are happening. Many will happen during the time of the election.
Awareness: Dos and Don’ts for Rohingyas during Election
#1 The Rohingya Muslims must be careful about those few hundred Muslims allowed to vote, while barring more than a million of Muslim from voting.
It’s for ‘divide and rule’ tactic. To divide us, to disunite us, to create more problems for us!
Hence, do not take this move by Gov’t as the positive one.
#2 President Thein Sein warned if USDP lose, there might be violene and bloodshed. They will try many ways to create violence against Rohingya to militarize Arakan for a coup.
#3 Abide by the country’s Laws.
#3 Thus, when you go to market, be careful of the environment and stay calm.
#4 Do not do online politics in public places such as tea-shop, betel-shop and others by using Whatsapp, Wechat, FB etc…
#5 Do not use any kind of electronic gadgets that are not allowed by the authorities.
#6 Do not comment on election or persuade anyone to vote for this party or that party as you are barred from the election.
#7 Try to stay home or in your own village as much as possible.
#8 Do not go out of home or stay outside too late at night or beyond curfew time.
#9 In case that you have to go to places where polls are taking place, inquire about the situation of the places first. And then, go.
#10 At least for the time during the election stay in unity. As you know, the whole Rohingya community banned from the Election including YOU!
#11 Do not complain to the authorities against any of your brethren for the time being whether does a mistake or not.
It is because one complaint of yours could be used as an excuse to target the whole Rohingya community by the authorities or Rakhine extremists in the authorities. And so, one of the victims could indiscriminately be YOU also!
Do not give troubles to yourself by your own hands. Stay united at least temporarily and for a few until Election period is over.
#12 Finally, my Rohingya compatriots, please be well-aware of the situation. Do not react upon instigations and stay calm even if you are provoked. You should not give the extremists any chance to kill you again.
But it doesn’t mean that you should not be prepared. Be prepared, be aware! Hope for the best, prepare for the worst!
May Allah save all of you who are living in Arakan in fear and without any help!
[Reports contributed by Rohingya Mirror, Rohingya Eye, Saeed Arakani, Win Myo and Correspondents from Kyauktaw; Edited by M.S. Anwar]
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