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Peaceful Co-existence in Federalism Within Burma


By MSU News


         It is a bit complicated subject and able to see across that some highly educated people who do not understand about it as it is the field they do not study. 

         None of you need not worry about Sino Burmese, Anglo Burmese, Anglo Indians, Burmese Indians and Burmese Chinese. They were in fluid population mixing mainly among the Burmese population in the Burmese territory.  That means they have no territories in which they formed majority population within the Union of Burma (UB) and the law in the UB does not allow to be indigenous people of the land if their ancestors came after 1823.   

         The problem is there is no way that we can demarcate their settlement as one territory for there is no territory in which they form their ethnic majority population. That was the reason why they were not invited to the Panglong Conference as they were represented as Burmese/Burmans territorial people by General Aung San.

They have the same rights as other citizens in the territory in which they mixed in fluid population with other citizens of the UB. They are all fully fledged citizens of the UB and they have the full right to lead us as other citizens of the UB and not as citizens of any other foreign countries.

         According to the United Nations Charter, to have a self governing territory, a people should have a wide enough territory of clear-cut boundary in which they form majority population of their ethnic people. The existing eight territories of the Union of Burma(UB) like the territories of Chins, Kachins, Shans, Karens, Karennis(Kaya), Arakanese, Mons and the Burmans have their own wide enough territories in which their respective population form overwhelming majority in each of their respective territories.

         People say that Burmese/Burmans are the majority population in the UB. But you will see no Burmese/Burmans in the Chin State except those Burmans who were sent to control and meddle in the Chin State internal affairs by the ruling Burmese military regime because of the ruling system being adopted in Burman colonial system.  You may see some Burmese in Shan State and `Kachin state. But they are minority to Kachin population and Shan population.

          “Senior General” Than Shwe is now proclaiming himself as the Emperor of the Burmese Empire. The Burmese democratic forces are therefore totally against this reactionary imperialist philosophy and that is why the democratic forces of the UB and the revered Buddhist monks have been bitterly fighting against this Burmese imperialism.

         So we Burmese people need not to worry about people like Rohingyas, Kuki, Palaung, Pa O, Wa etc.  Rohinjas are people in Arakan State and it is in the territory of Arakanese. So you need not indulge into the internal affairs of the Arakan territory if you are not a native Arakan people.

         It is the business between Arakan and Rohinja.  Other people outside their territory are to intervene only at the request of Arakanese and Rohinjas. Other people outside the Arakanese territory are all to mind only their own business in their respective territories.

         In the same way you need not indulge into Kuki, Palong, Pa-ao and Wa. Kuki is mostly in Sagaing Division and they deserve a teritory in which they form majority population.

         Palong, Pa O, and Wa are in the Shan State and you cannot interfere the internal affairs of the Shan territory as a state.  You cannot meddle in their internal affairs of the Shan State without the request of the Shan state people if you are a Burman ethnic people outside the Shan State.

          You as a Burman ethnic people within the Burman’s territory are to dominate only within the Burman territory and you are not to try to dominate beyond Buman territory over the internal affairs of other territories of States. That is federalism if you support federalism.

         If you are not clear about federalism as you seem to be in your sincere honesty, there should not be like what we call Pyima in federalism. According to the Panglong agreement the U B has been the coming together of all those existing eight territories. The Union of Burma was formed on ethnic national territorial basis and no one can ignore this principle at any historical period.

         Those original signatory territorial people of Chins, Kachins, Shans and the Burmese/Burmans and those who ratified Panglong agreement later have been the people of the territories of Karenni, Karen who joined the Union in 1947 constitution and Arakan and Mons who joined the Union as they formed Arakan Affairs Council and the Mons Affairs council in 1962 to be the two constituent units in the constitution of the future federal Union of Burma.

         These eight territories mentioned above as the constituent states of the UB should have respectively their own State Legislative Assemblies and Governments to legislate and rule their state internal affairs according to the laws passed by their respective Legislative Assemblies according to the constitutions of the Federal Union and the constitutions of the States should provide the jurisdiction of state legislations. This is what is calling self governing territories in federalism. If you look into the UN Charter, you will come across this wording “self governing territories”.

         All these different territories as constituent States of the Union are together to also form Federal Legislative Assembly and Government to work out the common cause and interest of all the constituent States. All the states are to depute equal number of State representatives from each state to a chamber of federal Legislation that will represent each state.

          In the same way, there will be another chamber of federal Legislative assembly that will be elected on the basis of population to represent the population of the Union. There will be more representatives here for states that have more population in their respective States than others.

         There will be at present eight constituent states or more of the federal Union of Burma. Thus there will be eight state governments and one federal government to be in total nine governments in the country. But if each of the seven Divisions of Burma proper wants to be the constituent states of the federal Union, there will be 14 state governments and one federal government to be fifteen governments in the country.

         However, the number of the State governments will increase though the federal government could be only always one if there are other wide enough areas and population to form  constituent states  of the federal Union out of the UB or from outside the Union of Burma.

          The constitution of the federal Union will not allow the federal government or other state governments to interfere in the State internal affairs that are concern only with the State governments according to the constitution of the federal Constitution and the respective constitutions of the different constituent states of the federal Union.

         That is the reason why we wrote here that you cannot interfere in the internal affairs of the Arakan State and Shan States regarding in their internal affairs in Rohinja affairs in Arakan and Pa oa, Palong and Wa affairs in the Shan state internal affairs if the people there do not request the federal government to intervene in their internal affairs. That is what we call the peace full co-existence in federalism.

         The Burmese military regime is now practicing against the Panglong Agreement to meddle in other territories internal affairs   as they try to dominate not only the Burmans territory as Burmans Generals, but they also try to dominate beyond Burmans territory over the territories of Panglong Agreement signatory territories. This is against federalism if you said you believe in federalism in the UB.

         That mindset to interfere in other peoples internal affairs is like instigating territories to be in war to cause lawlessness in the country. That is the reason why the UB has never had peace in the country for a half century after independence from the British.

         Thus we are now totally stop trying to indulge in other internal affairs on the basis of the Panglong Agreement. It was signed by all the representatives of the territories including the Burmans territory for which it was signed by General Aung San on behalf of the Burmese/Burmans territory.

          Panglong Agreement is not an Agreement signed by all the ethnic people in the British Burma on February 12, 1947.  It was an Agreement between ethnic people who own their respective territories. It was an Agreement signed by the ethnic people that could have self governing territories in their clear-cut definite respective territories according to the UN Charter and UN Declaration of Decolonization.

         United Nations Charter and United Nations Declaration of Decolonization clearly provide that a people with different culture and language which have wide enough territories of their own should all have their own self governing territories. All the territories of Arakanese, Chins, Kachins, Shans, Kayas, Karens, Mons and Burmans fit in this UN Charter provisions.

         It was under such provision that Chin Territory, Kachin Territory, Shan territory and Burman territory came to sign the Panglong agreement just to free together from the British colonialism and any other colonialism.

             The reason was, all these four territories were annexed by the British separately as independent territories all by themselves in their respective territories. The territory of Burma was given home rule as the Burmese ministerial or the Burmese Provincial government under a British governor. Karen people had representatives in the provincial government of Burma province. The last British Governor of the Burmese/Burman Province after WWII in 1946-47 was Dorman Smith and Hubert Ranch.

         The territories of Chin, Kachin and Shan had no representatives in the Burma provincial government as they have their own way of governing system in their respective territories. They were not included in the Burmese provincial government.

         The British governor ruled their territories through the native Chieftains in the Chin territory, through native Duwas in the Kachin territory and through native Sawbaws in the Federated Shan States.

         Kaya or Karenni territory was an independent territory recognized by the British as a sovereign independent country. It was not ruled even by the British.

         The British government had a pointed a secretary known as the Secretary of the Burma Frontier Areas to rule the Burma Frontier Areas through their chieftains, Duwas and sawbwas. In the Burma Frontier Areas were the territories of Chins, Kachins and Shans. The last Secretary of Burma Frontier Areas before independence in 1948 was H.N.C Stevenson.

         So at the time the British was to give independence to the Burmese territory under the Burmese Provincial government, the territories in the Burma Frontier Areas had the right to be in their status quo as independent territories as they were before the British annexation. The reason was they were annexed as independent territories outside Burma and outside the Burmese kingdom.

         The British according to the UN Charter should not ruled any more these Burma Frontier Areas without the Frontier People consent after the UN was formed in 1945. The reason was they were distinct people different from British people culturally.

         In the same way they could not hand over the territories of the Burma Frontier Areas in any ways to Independent Burma to rule these Burma Frontier Areas people as the territories in the Burma Frontier areas were annexed by the British as independent territories outside Burma and as they were different and distinct people from the Burmans culturally.

         If the British assumed that these Frontier Areas people were still backward to rule by themselves, the British government was to give the territories to the UN Trusteeship system.

         The idea of handing over the Burma Frontier Areas to the UN Trusteeship system is the Trust country or countries are to train the country or people under the Trusteeship system so that they can become independence to rule by themselves as self governing territories.

         General Aung San as an honest and true politician knew about that very well. So he even mentioned about it during the conversation with the British government that independent Burma deserved the only country to be the Trust country of the Burma Frontier Areas if the British were to give these Areas to the UN Trusteeship system.

         That was the reason why the British suggested to General Aung San to hold a conference at Panglong to ask the leaders of the Burma Frontier Areas whether they would like to take independence together with Burma.

         That was the reason why Panglong agreement was convened with the people who had clear-cut boundaries of territories and that was how Chin territory, Kachin territory, Shan territory and Burman territory came to sign the Panglong agreement.

         The constitution of the Union of Burma 1947 was therefore framed by General Aung San and his cabinet ministers in federal, form similar to the constitution of the Soviet Union so that the several territories of the Burma Frontier Areas people should become self governing territories in the federal Union of Burma. That constitution frame work was adopted by the AFPFL Convention for the framework of the constitution of the Union of Burma 1947.

         We can see here General Aung San as a sincere leader and who had full compassion on the territories of the Frontier people. He thus  in loyalty to his promise to the Frontier leaders, fulfilled that the Union of Burma be formed in federalism if they took independence together with Burma.

         So he and his cabinet passed that Union constitution frame work in Federalism according to what the Burma Frontier Areas deserved to the Union constitution in federal form on the line of the constitution of the Soviet Union.

         The name of the new country formed of the several different territories was given the name “Union of Burma”. It has no longer been Burma again as it means only the kingdom of Burma under King Thibaw. The word “Union of” was not put just for decoration like “daw” in “naing-ngan-daw”. It has legal interpretation.

         So we should not leave out the “Union of “when we mention the name of the country Union of Burma. It should be U.B. in brief like U.K. and U.S.A. especially at this time while  the Burmese military regime is campaigning for the name  “Burma” or “Myanmar”  as the name of the country in rigid Unitary form of constitution in militarism.

         After General Aung San and his cabinet ministers were all assassinated on July 19, 1947, his successor Burmese/ Burmans leaders in betraying General Aung San and the Frontier Areas people amended secretly the Union constitution in unitary form without the knowledge of the frontier people leaders and announced about the amendment only on the day it was adopted on September 24,1947 to be too late to do anything.

         However, Prime Minister U Nu was to amend the constitution in federal form in 1962 according to the 1947 UB constitution amendment provisions as it was framed by General Aung San and his cabinet ministers.

General Ne Win took over power when the constitutional government of the UB was to amend the constitution in federalism as he fabricated in the wrong way that federalism was disintegration and secession of the country.

         He banned the constitution of the U. B. 1947 which was to be amended according to Panglong agreement. The banning of the constitution means that Panglong agreement also   is no longer observed by the military regime.

         In the absence of the Panglong agreement and the 1947 Union constitution, there has been nothing that bound the Panglong Agreement signatory territories with Burmans territory. Thus all the territories of the Panglong Agreement signatories are free to declare independence of their status quo to be recognized internationally. But the non-Burman has not such idea so far as the democratic forces led by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi are recognizing the Panglong Agreement so far. That was the way how General Ne Win came to power.

         The Unitary constitution of the UB in 1947 and the fake constitution of the Socialist Republic of the Union of Burma 1974 have put the Union to all sorts of miseries and sufferings dragging the country to be the poorest of the poorest countries in the world. They failed to promote the country to be prosperous in democratic freedom.

         Learning all the bad lessons from the past unitary forms of our country constitution, we are now in full force to adopt our country constitution in federal democratic form. The leaders of the Burmese/Burmans territory and the leaders of the non-Burmans territories in the National Council of the Union of Burma (NCUB) and the National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma(NCGUB) have signed the eight Principals of the Federal Constitution of the Union of Burma.

         It has been on the basis of the eight principles of the Federal Constitutional that the constitution of the federal Union of Burma has been already drafted to put forward to be supported by the population in the country. It is the constitution of the Federal Union  of Burma in  Parliamentary system drafted in democracy freedom by the democratic forces in  exile with the support of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi.

         The other constitution is drafted by Military Regime, SPDC, at Nyaung hnipin camp in the vicinity of Rangoon, with their handpicked people of 1000, whom they forced to join the fake National Convention threatening them that  they will be imprisoned  if they did not comply with the call of the SPDC.

         It is a constitution to create only one voice, one people, and one religion not to allow surviving other ethnic people except the Burmese or Myanmarese. It will be in one party known as disciplined democracy in rigid unitary form of constitution in militarism. There will be a President who will have military experience as the head of the country.

           There will be 440 members of Parliament in which 110 will be military officers in service. Each of them is to control 110 civilian members of Parliament as they control a hundred soldiers in a company in the army. It will be just like crowning “Senior General” Than Shwe as the King of the Burmese or Myamarese to dominate everything on the land including having white elephants to rule the country according to the advices of his fortune tellers and the constitution to be in name on the papers.

         We are now therefore at present having two constitution drafts we mentioned above. The UN is now negotiating the military regime, the Democratic forces led by Daw Suu Kyi and the ethnic groups which are being led by the Ethnic Nationalities Council of the Union of Burma (ENC).

           Thus the way the UN solves with the three in tripartite dialogue could be to put up to the population to vote for the two constitutions in each territory in democratic freedom under the UN supervision.  The country population is to adopt any one of the constitutions which get majority votes in more than half of the number of the existing territories.  So the democratic forces are now to consider which constitution they will vote for.

Note:  Kindly give full-credit to Pu Lian Uk for this article, which he inspired through valuable ideas and opinion. 

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