Narinjara news

Had a man buried alive come back to life

Sittwe, 29 May 03
:  Two men believed to be killed by the Burmese Army in 1997 are now rumoured to be alive as a good number of Arakanese prisoners have recently been released from various prisons, according to our correspondent.

In 1997, the two men  U San Gyaw, 54, a well-known footballer from Sittwe, the capital of Rakhine State in western Burma, and Zeya Thami, 40, a Buddhist monk hailing from Minbra township, were arrested in Sittwe on charge of connection with the politicians living outside the country.  Shortly after the arrest U San Gyaw was believed to be buried alive by the Burmese Army on 11th August at Wadaung village under Kyauktaw Township where the footballer was born.   On the other hand the Buddhist monk was arrested by MI 10 at Sittwe and was believed to be killed at Maungdaw Town bordering with Bangladesh.  He was arrested from the Mroma Buddhist Monastery in Sittwe on 5th August, also on charges of involvement with underground politics with the political groups outside the country.

Our source said that the military intelligence agents came with clothes of U San Gyaw one day and forbade the family members not to do any religious or other ceremonies in memory of the murdered goalkeeper and also not to attract any attention of the public, and they threatened of dire consequences of all those who would be found to use the death of the sportsman into any situation that would create unrest.

Though the two persons have so far been believed to have been killed, the recent release of a number of persons from various prisons have gave birth to an unconfirmed report that the two are still behind bars in the Yay-kyi-aing prison camp in Rangoon.  The family members of the long-dead footballer are now eager to know the real truth about the position of their beloved one: whether it is true that the man is still living or was killed by live burial by the Burmese Army.  In absence of the legal or other opportunity to enquire into the matter the near and dear ones of U San Gyaw are in real trouble. 

U San Gyaw was one of those rare Rakhine sportsman who were selected for the state football team, and his was a household name for his hero-status at home.  #