Narinjara news

Thanks to the foreign Burmese radio services

Sittwe, 11
th June 03:  This is Sittwe, capital of the western Burmese Rakhine State.  Like in other parts of the state tuning to the popular Burmese broadcasts from BBC, VOA, RFA, and DVB, or any other foreign broadcasts are attracting huge crowd  usually in ‘clandestine groups’ since the listeners could land anytime in trouble: says a retired teacher in the town.

The townspeople are in utter confusion as to what happened that day at Ye-U on 30th May  whether the Burmese ruling junta’s demand of four death is true or the hundreds of death and many more missing as demanded by the opposition and the outside media.  The confusion is so alarming that people have started asking such questions as whether a change in the Burmese politics is imminent or that the SPDC junta is simply revelling in its hideous manipulation of the situation. 

A townsman on phone told us that the people have lost all their faith in the SPDC broadcasts, as they are one-sided and detached from the reality.  The junta leaders who are living a life of luxury seldom know what the majority ninety percent people of Burma is living with: utter poverty, deprivation of human rights, suppression of human rights and last but not list, subjecting the people to accept the gross lies through the official Burmese media  newspapers, radio and TV.  So the people have been compelled to depend upon the news from the four radio broadcasting services of the BBC, VOA, RFA and DVB.

A schoolteacher from a small town, Buthidaung, told that the Buddhist monasteries, and houses of local influential people are the places where the villagers and townspeople crowd to have a chance to listen to these broadcasts.  The listeners are careful enough not to attract ‘unnecessary attention’ from the junta elements working for the ubiquitous MI, military intelligence.

Though cheap short-wave radio sets from China are available in the market, not every household in Rakhine State owns a set because of the utter poverty faced by the people, he added.   

On inquiring about his message for the broadcasting houses he thanked and said that he, like other people from the country, wants the broadcasting houses to be more active and vigilant in making the objective news more available as the SPDC-manipulated news lacks objectivity and aims at partisanship, and because the SPDC resorts to news blackout on important national issues like the Friday massacre, hinting to the Ye-U incident where the SPDC supported USDA elements killed and wounded hundreds of the supporters of NLD in a bid to divert the attention of the world from the political reconciliation process undertaken by the UN.

“We are also fed up with the SPDC junta’s constant attack on the free radio broadcasts, branding them as ‘destructive elements, minions of western governments, and instigators of violence’, which has no acceptability inside Burma, let alone in the free world,” he further said, “and please watch out at the use of words by the SPDC junta, which alone is enough to define their ulterior motive.”

From reliable sources we have learnt that even those in the Burmese Army including the ninety-five percent of civilians depend on the foreign radio broadcasts for the news on developments inside the country.  #