Dooplaya Interview: Naw A---, August 2015


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Dooplaya Interview: Naw A---, August 2015

Published date:
Friday, December 2, 2016

In this Interview, Naw A--- describes events occurring in Kawkareik Township, Dooplaya District, in August 2015, including education, water supply and healthcare.

  • Naw A--- talked about the difficulties that she and her fellow teachers face at their school because one of the Burma/Myanmar government teacher’s husband teaches some of his wife’s lessons even though he is not a trained teacher.
  • Naw A--- also raised an issue that villagers from another village have diverted water from her village by using pipelines without consent from villagers in her village. This caused problems for the villagers because these pipelines are placed under their houses, plantations and farms. Villagers are also worried that they might face water scarcity in the summer season.
  • Naw A--- also mentioned that her school teaches up to Standard 4 and they teach both the Karen Education Department (KED) and the Burma/Myanmar government’s curriculum. In the past they could teach Karen language up to Standard 4, however, since two years ago, when her school became a Burma/Myanmar government school, they are only allowed to teach Karen language up to Standard 2. Villagers also have to provide accommodation and basic support for the school teachers who are hired by the Burma/Myanmar government.


[1] KHRG trains community members in southeast Burma/Myanmar to document individual human rights abuses using a standardised reporting format; conduct interviews with other villagers; and write general updates on the situation in areas with which they are familiar. When conducting interviews, community members are trained to use loose question guidelines, but also to encourage interviewees to speak freely about recent events, raise issues that they consider to be important and share their opinions or perspectives on abuse and other local dynamics.

[2] In order to increase the transparency of KHRG methodology and more directly communicate the experiences and perspectives of villagers in southeast Burma/Myanmar, KHRG aims to make all field information received available on the KHRG website once it has been processed and translated, subject only to security considerations. For additional reports categorised by Type, Issue, Location and Year, please see the Related Readings component following each report on KHRG’s website.

[3] Naw is a S’gaw Karen female honorific title used before a person’s name.

[4] A standard refers to a school year in the education system of Burma/Myanmar. The basic education system has a 5-4-2 structure. Primary school runs from Standard 1 to Standard 5, lower secondary school is Standard 6 to Standard 9, and upper secondary school is Standard 10 to Standard 11.

[5] All conversion estimates for the kyat in this report are based on the 14th October 2016 official market rate of 1,261.78 kyat to US $1.

[6] The Karen National Union's Education Department. The main goals of the KED are to provide education, as well as to preserve Karen language and culture. During the civil war in Burma/Myanmar the KED became the main organisation providing educational services in the KNU controlled areas in southeast Burma/Myanmar. The KED also previously oversaw the educational system in the seven refugee camps along the Thai-Burma/Myanmar border, however in 2009 these activities were restructured under the Karen Refugee Committee – Education Entity (KRCEE). See "Conflict Erupts over Govt teachers deployed to KNU areas," Karen News, August 20th 2013 and the KRCEE website: "About," accessed July 21st 2015.

[7] All conversion estimates for the baht in this report are based on the 14 October 2016 official market rate of 35.27 baht to US $1.

[8] The Democratic Karen Benevolent Army (DKBA Benevolent) was formed in 2010 as a breakaway group following the transformation of the majority of the original Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (1994 – 2010) into Border Guard Forces (BGF). This group was originally called the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army until it changed its name to the Democratic Karen Benevolent Army in April 2012 in order to reflect its secularity. This group is comprised of different divisions, including Klo Htoo Baw Battalion and DKBA-5, and was led for many years by General Saw Lah Pwe aka Na Khan Mway who died in March 2016 and was replaced by General Saw Mo Shay in April 2016. The DKBA (Benevolent) signed a preliminary ceasefire with the Burma/Myanmar Government on November 3rd 2011 and then signed the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) on October 15th 2015. The group is based in Son Si Myaing area, Myawaddy/Kawkareik Township, Dooplaya District, southern Kayin State. This DKBA (Benevolent) (2010 – present) should not be confused with, either the original DKBA (Buddhist) (1994-2010) which was transformed into the BGF in 2010, or with the DKBA (Buddhist) (2016 – present) which was formed in 2016 as a splinter group of the DKBA (Benevolent). Importantly, the DKBA (Benevolent) has signed both the preliminary and nationwide ceasefire agreements with the Burma/Myanmar government, whereas the DKBA (Buddhist) has not signed either agreement.