Realization those who have now power but also

Realization of Official
politics and Advocacy politics over land issues


Myanmar has witnessed a
worrying level of land issues which originally stem from military regime. The
innocent uneducated farmers have lost their farmland, suffered unequal share,
being displaced by military authorities. Even democratic civilian government
has trying to take action, nothing remains changed. Thus, I think now is the
time to take care of ourselves when there is no one to rely on. So, in
analyzing what can we do for ourselves, I believe that we can benefit from
realizing official politics and advocacy politics well.

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To realize how they can
impact, we, first and foremost, must know what is official politics? What is
advocacy politics? Official politics is a mean which could provide social
engaging with authorities to shape the politics through voting, writing to MPs
and participating in government consultations. Advocacy politics is a dynamic
process in which dissatisfied people to what authorities are doing are united
altogether demonstrating what they are suffering that could lead to people with
different interests which would end up being altogether making sure that their
voice are heard so that the government could no longer neglect it.

I will go first with realization
of official politics. It is no doubt true that all the politicians and parties
have been trying to get vote in order to gain political control. As an
advantage, Myanmar is now under democratic government which means voting means
everything to politicians, not only to those who have now power but also those
having high hope for another term. On the other hand, farmers and local ethnics
who are currently suffering land issues has made up 70% of Myanmar population.
Therefore, even when the local suffered people do not know how to make their
social claims to be heard, the official politics would have a big impact on
current government or next since they could not have a long victory or any for
that matter. Thus, remember that you, the public have an absolute power and
your voice matters the most under democracy. Nobody but you, the public, could
change those wrongdoings, land grabbing on your own just realizing the official
politics well. However, make sure that you use such absolute power in voting a
potential one to run the whole country. No biased. No corruption. Otherwise,
you would ruin next term by making yourself suffer more.

Speaking of second one,
advocacy politics, I think we, Myanmar people, had a good experience with it.
We had done such a great job of advocacy politics for Myit Sone Dam project
which was suspended under U Thein Sein government on the ground that it gives
no benefits but sufferings to public. We might not have labelled or known it as
advocacy politics as we have a very limited political experience. However, in
Myit Sone Dam project, we united, attracted people even with different
interests, demonstrated what we had suffered altogether leading the government
to take actions even when they had to let their benefit go. Suspended Myit Sone
Dam project is a best example to us for our current land grabbing issues by
military even when the current government uses their usual excuse, a difficult
confrontation to military. Likewise, if we could use advocacy politics in land
grabbing issues wisely, the government has no choice but to take our voice in
their action. However, make sure that you demonstrated them in peaceful way or
otherwise, it could result as your unintended mistakes so that the government
could name it “violence” which would probably be ending up not taking your
voice into action. Make sure you have done it in a peaceful, wise way as if you
had done for Myit Sone Dam project.

As time has passed and we
have seen no changes in land issues, I think now is the time to take care of
ourselves when there is no one to trust. Besides, we are now under democratic
government which means our voice matters most so, make sure yours is heard. By
realizing the official politics and advocacy politics, I am sure we can achieve
some positive results on land issues as we have done great in past.