Funds for the construction of two statues of the late Gen Aung San will not come from Burma’s national budget, according to Chin State’s Minister of Development Affairs, Electricity and Industry.
The copper statues of the Burmese independence icon, which will be located in Hakha and Htantlang townships in Chin State, will be paid for by private donors.
“We will not use the national budget for it—we will only spend money from public and private donations,” Minister U Soe Htet told Khonumthung News, adding that one donor has already committed 30,000,000 kyats (US$19,650) to the project.
Locals in Htantlang have opposed the stationing of a statue of Gen Aung San in the town, suggesting that it would be more fitting to have an ethnic Chin historical figure memorialized there. Aung San, the father of State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, was a member of the Burman majority.
The minister explained that because the statue will be located in a newly constructed public park, some of those who were originally against the project have changed their minds since it is being privately funded and will be open to all.
“They opposed it in the beginning,” U Soe Htet said. “The park will be a public park. People can come and relax there.”