Parliament Warns Urban Planners to Follow the Law

A legislator has asked parliament to conduct a systematic review of all urban planning projects to determine if they are following the law.

Urban planning inconsistent with the law, rules and regulations needs to be reviewed, Daw Ni Ni May Myin, of Taunggok township in Rakhine State, told the Pyithu Hluttaw on Friday.

“Since the objective of this government is to put in place a transparent and stable system, urban projects lacking transparency or found breaking the law should be reviewed,” she said.

She cited as an example a project in Taunggok township during the previous government. The project included nipa palm land, farmland, fallow and vacant land, and only 5.19 acres of nipa palm land had received a permit for the project.

The project contained 319 acres, including more than 190 acres of farmland, more than 5 acres of nipa palm land, and 123 acres of fallow and vacant land. Of the three types of land, Htawara Aung Myay Company purchased the farmland and nipa palm land through an agreement with farmers, said Deputy Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation Minister U Hla Kyaw.

With regard to applying for land usage for other purposes, the state government granted approval in principal for nipa palm land. While the application for the other 190.79 acres of farmland was being processed, a notice was released, transparently and in accordance with the law, that anyone could object to the process. The state government also conducted groundwork regarding implementation of the project, said U Hla Kyaw.

“If it’s not in accordance with existing rules and regulations, the relevant state government agency should halt it,” said U Hla Kyaw.

Meanwhile, Pyithu Hluttaw Speaker U Win Myint added that these incidents had occurred in other states and regions, and that it was a vital matter for the whole nation.

“If new town and housing projects were being carried out without the approval of the Pyidaungsu government, and without knowledge of related ministries and Myanmar Investment Commission, there wouldn’t be land left for cultivation in the whole country,” he said.

Although the state government was said to be responsible for stopping the projects in violation of the law, the Union ministry also had its share of responsibility; therefore, the ministry should instruct the state government to stop such projects, and back it up with evidence.

Daw Ni Ni May Myint said letters should be sent based on gathered evidence and submitted to the related ministry, Myanmar Investment Commission, and personnel responsible in the Union government.


Source: Myanmar Times


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