Message of Greetings sent by President U Htin Kyaw on the occasion of the 43rd Anniversary Celebration of Mon State Day

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March 18, 2017

Following is the translation of the message sent by the President to 43rd Anniversary Celebration of Mon State Day.

Dear esteemed ethnic brothers and sisters living in the Mon state.

I feel very happy and greatly honoured to have the opportunity to send this Message of Greetings on the occasion of the 43rd Anniversary Celebrations of Mon State Day which falls on the 19th March 2017.

Today is a day of great significance and auspiciousness for all ethnic brothers and sisters and all ethnic brothers born in this Union who are living in Mon State because this day has been designated as Mon State Day. I also take this opportunity to send greetings and good wishes for your well-being, prosperity and auspiciousness.

In the 1948 Constitution right after Independence, the present Mon state and Kayin state were included in Taninthayi region. During the time of the Burma Socialist Programme Party due to the foresight and vision of ethnic Mon leaders, efforts were initiated to designate “Mon State” in the 1974 Constitution. The day on which the term “Mon State” was inscribed in the draft Constitution namely 19th March 1974, was thus designated as Mon State Day and we have been having celebrations annually ever since. Today marks the 43rd anniversary of this day.

If we look back into history, right after we gained Independence, we witnessed bitter experiences which resulted from the impact of political conflicts within Myanmar society. Because of these conflicts for many decades, Myanmar lagged behind our neighboring countries in the political, economics, and social spheres. Now is the time to take lessons from these bitter experiences and work together for the cessation of these conflicts and for all ethnic nationalities to live together in our country.

That is why our present Government is working hard by conducting the Union Peace Conference - 21st Century Panglong for National Reconciliation and Union Peace, something which all ethnic nationals and Union citizens have yearned and longed for, for many years.

Furthermore, in looking forward to the emergence of a Democratic Federal Union, we have been working for the development of a Constitution which would be compatible and for the lifting of the living standards of the people. For these policies and programs to be successful, it is very important for the Government, the Hluttaws, Political parties, political forces, the Tatmadaw, the Ethnic armed groups, civil society organizations and the entire population to join in and work hard.

I am very happy to learn that the ethnic armed forces in the Mon State were able to sign the National level Ceasefire Agreement in 2001, and that they have been cooperating and working hand in hand with the Mon State Government on local multi-sectoral development projects. As beneficial results, we now see positive developments in various sectors such as transportation, education, and in economic affairs; these being the results of the round table negotiations which had been held in frankness and cordiality among ethnic brothers.

It is very important for us to note with deep understanding that we need to make continuous efforts with unflagging zeal till we achieve eternal peace.

Recently, meetings had been held between the UNFC – United Nationalities Federal Council and the State Counsellor and the Peace Commission. We are happy with these positive talks which have good potential for advancing the aspirations of the Mon ethnic nationals for peace. We believe and hope that they would participate fully in the Peace Process and that they would participate with full resolve in the Union Peace Conference - 21st Century Panglong which is being implemented by the Union Government.

I urge all Mon ethnic brothers and sisters to join hands and participate with the strength of cohesion, unity and friendship and work for the success of the National Reconciliation and Union Peace process and future nation building tasks.

As I send this Message of Greetings, I also urge all of you to work hard for the peace and prosperity of the Union as well as for the modernization and development of Mon State, not only for this era but also for the future.