The committee for the amendment of the law, which was enacted in 1998, is headed by U Myat Thu, minister for Planning and Finance of the Mandalay Region government.
Last week, the draft was discussed by members of the Pyithu Hluttaw (Lower House) Bill Committee, the Myanmar Archaeology Association and Bagan-Nyaung-U CSOs. The draft is now ready for debate in the Pyithu Hluttaw.
Under the draft, heritage sites would be managed by a committee in each region and state, instead of by the Ministry of Religious Affairs and Culture.
U Thu Ya Aung of the archaeology association, who participated in last week’s discussion, said there is no mention of CSOs or people’s groups being represented on the heritage site management committees. He added that even the national management committee would be comprised of regional ministers.
He also noted that the Ministry of Religious Affairs and Culture will not abolish the 1998 law after the amendments are enacted.
“We want to abolish the old law or this could create some confusion between developers and local communities, and for businesses that depend on heritage sites,” U Thu Ya Aung said.