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A young Myanmar learning leadership

12 Aug 2013

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U Sai Aung Htet Oo, a 25-year-old ethnic Shan and an instructor for ethnic minorities at the Technical Training School under the Ministry of Border Affairs of the Shan State of Myanmar, had waited nervously for the results of his English test. He and 69 other candidates had spent seven weeks studying English at a Ministry of Border Affairs’ training centre near Yangon. He had studied hard and hoped he would be among the 34 selected to attend a two-week executive programme on governance, leadership and public policy at LKY School in Singapore. U Sai Aung Htet Oo had never left his village and the results of the English test would change that. 

Sponsored by the Nippon Foundation, the “Enhancing the Leadership Potential of Myanmar State Government Officials” programme was designed to address ethnic policy issues that the government is struggling to tackle. The programme would expose the participants to Singapore’s multi-ethnic society. The participants, 17 women and 17 men, included members from the Akha, Chin, Kayah, Larhu, Mon, Naga, Rakhine, and Shan minorities. They were accompanied by U Thein Htay, Director of Education and Training Center at the Ministry, and their English teacher.

Against the backdrop of the Marina Bay in Singapore, U Sai Aung Htet Oo who had passed his English test, said, “I am looking forward to going back to Myanmar and sharing the lessons I have learned about Singapore’s harmonious and peaceful multi-ethnic society, world-class healthcare sector and strategic public sector management. Myanmar has more than 130 different ethnic groups and is in its early stages of transforming its economy and government. The exposure to Singapore’s advanced development has opened up a new world to me and my colleagues.

“Myanmar will not become like Singapore overnight but Singapore’s policies relating to housing development, ethnic diversity, public sector management and anti-corruption can be adapted and adopted in Myanmar. I am grateful to Nippon Foundation and the LKY School for providing me and my colleagues such an invaluable opportunity.”

Since its launch eight years ago, LKY School’s Executive Education has trained over 10,000 people from 80 countries. Its programmes are designed to serve the needs of organisations and working professionals in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors, to help strengthen their leadership and management capabilities.

For more details please visit LKY School’s Executive Education Alumni web portal or contact us at lkysppep@nus.edu.sg.

LKYSPP Executive Education

LKYSPP Executive Education