Saturday, October 1, 2011

DVB: Another Donor Stooge even Stealing from Donors?

(The September-30 press statement from DVB Board for possible theft of donor funds.)

1. The Management and Board of Directors of the Democratic Voice of Burma (DVB) have discovered that the leadership of DVB ’Inside Operations’ in Burma may have embezzled in 2010, up to Baht 9 million (1.7 million Norwegian Kroners or approximately 300,000 US Dollars) from funds allocated for journalists and operations inside Burma.

2. Preliminary investigations by the Board show that other DVB journalists working in Burma and elsewhere were not involved.

3. The Executive Director of DVB, Aye Chan Naing, and the Deputy Executive Director, Khin Maung Win, although not involved in the embezzlement, have taken full responsibility. They have stepped down from their management positions to enable external auditors to conduct an impartial investigation.

Aye Chan Naing.
4. The Board of Directors have accepted the decision of the two Executive Directors and have appointed Harn Yawnghwe as Acting Executive Director of DVB to oversee operations in the interim.

5. The DVB Board has initiated legal action. This initiative is of crucial importance to prove that the DVB as an exiled media institution that promotes democratic values and transparency does not allow any organisational practices that go contrary to what it is promoting. DVB is registered as a Norwegian Foundation.

6. This process will not have any major impact on DVB operations, nor on any of the DVB affiliates.

Over the years, DVB has built up an extensive network of reporters inside the country, which has delivered news under challenging conditions. The fact that 17-DVB journalists from the network at present are serving from 3 to 65 year terms in various prisons in Burma is a clear indicator of the selfless and dedicated work of these journalists.

(Harald Bockman)


1. Mr. Harald Bockman, Board Chairman, Tel +47 9414 38 38.
2. Mr. Harn Yawnghwe, Acting Executive Director, Tel +32 475 75 3632.


Khin Maung Win.

Formerly the Head of the Information Department of ABSDF (All Burma Students Democratic Front) Khin Maung Win was appointed by NCGUB (National Coalition Government of Union of Burma) as The Deputy Executive Director of DVB (Democratic Voice of Burma) in 1992.

Harn Yawnghwe is the Director of the Brussels-based Euro-Burma Office (EBO) and the Adviser to the Ethnics National Council (ENC). He is the youngest son of Sao Shwe Thaike, the last ruler of the ancient kingdom of Yawnghwe, and the President of Union of Burma in 1962.

Harn escaped to Thailand in 1963 at the age of fifteen, after the Burmese military seized power, killed his brother and arrested his father, who died in prison. He was granted political asylum in Canada in 1969. He has served at the highest level in Burma’s exiled democracy movement.

From 1991-2002 he was special advisor to Dr Sein Win, Burma’s Prime Minister in exile of NCGUB Exile Government, and for the last 4 years has been a senior advisor to the leadership of Burma’s many ethnic nationalities. He is also Director of the Euro-Burma Office in Brussels, which promotes democratic development in Burma.