January 19, 2022, Myanmar: The illegal Myanmar military junta is being awarded legitimacy and support from regional and international organisations of supreme audit institutions, and the auditors general of Norway and Sweden, a Justice For Myanmar investigation has found.
Despite the Myanmar people’s overwhelming rejection of the military’s illegal attempted coup on February 1 last year, ASEAN Supreme Audit Institutions (ASEANSAI) and the International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI) have recognised and engaged with the junta’s auditor general throughout 2021.
In November, the junta’s Office of the Auditor General became chair of ASEANSAI for a two-year term, placing the junta in the leadership of an international organisation, likely for the first time.
Following the attempted coup, the Myanmar military deposed Myanmar’s previous auditor general and appointed Dr Kan Zaw, a former deputy minister during the military’s previous proxy government led by the Union Solidarity and Development Party.
The military’s appointment of Dr Kan Zaw breaches the Lima Declaration of Guidelines on Auditing Precepts and the Mexico Declaration on SAI Independence.
ASEANSAI’s development partners, the Office of the Auditor General of Norway and the Swedish National Audit Office, have continued to engage with the Myanmar military’s auditor general through ASEANSAI, by providing training and technical support.
The Swedish National Audit Office and a representative of a Norway-based INTOSAI program even attended the ASEANSAI Summit that was convened by the terrorist military junta on November 2.
At the Summit, war criminal Vice Senior General of the Myanmar military, Soe Win, was “Guest of Honour”.
Norwegian and Swedish recognition of the junta’s auditor general contrasts with the position of the European Union, which has told Justice For Myanmar that “the EU does not engage in any form of dialogue with the military junta. Therefore the EU does not plan participation in ASEANSAI events or support to ASEANSAI while the Myanmar military junta is included.”
Justice For Myanmar spokesperson Yadanar Maung says: “The Myanmar military junta is a terrorist organisation that is carrying out mass killings, rape and torture with total impunity.
“Engagement and support for the junta’s auditor general has emboldened the junta’s terror campaign and provided legitimacy that the junta is desperately seeking.
“ASEANSAI and its member states have failed to uphold human rights and respect the will of Myanmar people by recognising the junta’s auditor general and allowing him to assume leadership.
“INTOSAI has also deplorably failed to respect human rights and the principle of independence of supreme audit institutions by formally recognising the junta.
“We call on ASEANSAI and INTOSAI to immediately cease recognition of the Myanmar military junta and bar its representatives from participation in all events.
“We welcome the EU’s position to not participate in, or support, ASEANSAI while it is under the leadership of the Myanmar military junta. Norway and Sweden must follow the EU’s lead and end all contact with the illegal junta, including its auditor general.”
Note to editors
See Justice For Myanmar’s investigation into international audit institutions legitimising the Myanmar military junta here: www.justiceformyanmar.org/stories/international-audit-institutions-are-legitimising-the-illegal-myanmar-military-junta
Justice For Myanmar, a group of covert activists campaigning for justice and accountability for the people of Myanmar, is calling for an end to military business and for federal democracy and a sustainable peace.
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