The Kachin Post / January 1, 2020
The planned celebration of the 72nd anniversary of the Kachin State Day at the Manau Park in Myitkyina has been called off by the government of Kachin State, a move to avoid the looming public frustration over the controversial term used by the event organization committee.
The Kachin State government has unofficially instructed to cancel to hold the Kachin State Day celebration which originally planned for Manau festival and funfair market at the Manu Park in Myitkyina, according to Lat Awng from Kachin National Consultative Assembly (KCNA). However, the official 72nd anniversary will be observed at the government office compound.
In early of December 2019, the event committee for 2020 Kachin State Day celebration erected the poster sign with missing “Jinghpaw” word that sparked the public outrage. Members of the event committed are from Manau Park based Kachin National Association of Tradition and Culture also called Wunpawng Htung Hking Hpung Ginjaw (WHG).
A week later, a parallel culture association called Kachin Culture and Literature Association (KCLA) raised objection against the excluding the “Jinghpaw” word by calling official from Kachin State government to intervene the dispute. Kachin Women Association and Kachin Celebrity Association also shown their disagreement over the wording used by the event committee.
The Kachin State government later released a statement instructing to use only Burmese language instead of Kachin language in that event. The statement, which released on Decmeber 27, also suggested that the controversial name for the Kachin State Day should be chosen by a future referendum in which all the Kachin from Kachin State and overseas can cast their vote.
Last Monday, WHG has requested the Kachin State government to give permission to hold the Manau festival and funfair in February of 2020 for celebration of 73rd anniversary of Burma’s Union Day.
Kachin State was emerged on January 10, 1948 as one of the founding State of Union of Burma. Jinghpaw also know as Kachin language is a lingua franca of six Kachin tribes; Jinghpaw, Lavo, Lachid, Zaiwa, Rawang and Lisu.