Thursday, 28 May 2020

Buthidaung, Arakan State: The ruling Burmese military junta is forcing villagers into labor for a road construction project. The road will connect Buthidaung town to Ghonapara village of Aley Chaung village tract. The work began in the first week of January.

An order was issued for the construction of the road by Township Peace and Development Council (TPDC) Chairman on January 2. And villagers have started working since January 4, said one of the workers.

The forced labor is creating problems for villagers who are facing a famine like situation because a kilogram of rice is being sold at over Kyat 500, whereas most of the villagers have no work to support their families.

The eight feet wide and three mile long Buthidaung Town-Ghonapara road construction project began in 2008 and is targeted to be completed by next February.

Villagers from Aley Chaung, Monibill and Ghonarpara villages have to provide at least 50 laborers daily for the road construction. Workers also have to pave stones on the road which were carried from the mountains by the villagers earlier.

Villagers have to work on the road construction site from 7 am to 5 pm.