July 17, 2018
The handover ceremony for new school buildings was held at No. 9 Mingan Basic Education High School (BEHS) in Mingan Ward, Sittwe Township, Rakhine State on 17th July 2018 (Tuesday) under the "Programme for Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of Schools in Flood and Landslide Affected Areas." The programme is a Budget Support Grant of 1.5 billion JPY (Approximately 17.6 billion MMK) by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to the Ministry of Education (MoE) as part of the Japanese Government's pledge to recover and reconstruct schools damaged by the floods and landslides caused by Cyclone Komen in 2015, which affected 4,116 schools across Myanmar including Rakhine in 2015.
Approximately 67% of the total grant, amounting 11.8 billion MMK, has been allocated for the school reconstruction in Rakhine State. To date 39 schools have been reconstructed in Sittwe, Pauktaw, Kyaukphyu, Munaung, Mrauk-U, Minbya, Ponnnagyun, Minbya, Ponnagyun, Maungdaw, Kyauktaw, Rathedaung, based on Build-Back-Better (BBB) principles, where the schools are built with stronger structure to reduce potential disaster risks. Also additional facilities such as water and sanitation facilities and KG classrooms are constructed to further improve the learning environments.
No. 9 Mingan BEHS is one of the 39 schools reconstructed by MoE under the programme. The damaged school buildings were replaced by a two-story-building with 12 classrooms with the reinforced concrete structure and elevated floors as well as additional toilets.
The Ceremony was honored by the attendance of His Excellency Dr. Myo Thein Gyi, Union Minister of Education, H.E U Nyi Pu, Chief Minister of Rakhine State Government, H.E. Mr. Ichiro MARUYAMA, Japanese Ambassador to Myanmar, Mr. Masayuki KARASAWA, Chief Representative of JICA Myanmar Office, H.E. U Aung Soe, Deputy Minister of Social Warfare, Relief and Resettlement, H.E. U Kyaw Lin, Deputy Minister of Construction, H.E. General Than Htut, Deputy Minister of Border Affairs, and officials from the Ministry of Education and Rakhine State Education Department (SED). U Maung Kyaw Zan, Principal of B.E.H.S No. 9 Mingan, teachers, students, as well as community members warmly welcomed the guests with Rakhine songs and dances performed by students.
H.E. Mr. MARUYAMA, Japanese Ambassador to Myanmar started expressed his gratitude to the heartfelt ceremony during his speech, and announced future plan to construct additional 15 schools in Rakhine State under the Programme. The construction is expected to be completed in early 2020.
The ceremony also marked introduction of new Grade 2 textbooks, which was introduced at all primary schools in Myanmar at the beginning of the school year, 1 June 2018, following the introduction of new Grade 1 textbooks last year, which were developed by MoE with JICA's technical assistance under the Project for Curriculum Reform at Primary Level (CREATE). Together with new schools buildings under the Programme and the new curriculum, JICA is assisting MoE to raise education quality standards in Rakhine State.
Mr. KARASAWA, JICA Chief Representative also revealed JICA's assistance package for regional development of Rakhine State; in addition to the school construction, JICA is supporting provision of Sittwe town water supply, electrification, roads and bridges construction with loans. Furthermore, he added that next phase is underway for uplifting the foundation of the whole Rakhine state.
With the multi-sectoral development assistance package, JICA has committed to join its efforts with the Government of Myanmar and the international community to accelerate equitable and sustainable socio-economic development for all people in Rakhine State.