Monday, January 31, 2011

Karenni leader Khun Hte Bu Peh dies

Monday, 31 January 2011 13:51 Ko Wild

Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP) chairman Khun Hte Bu Peh died of throat cancer on Thursday in Mae Hon Song, Thailand, according to his relatives and party officials.

Burial was scheduled for Monday, January 31, at a location on the Karenni State border with Thailand. A Baptist Christian, he is survived by his wife Day Daw Phaw and five children.

Khun Hte Bu Peh, 74, had been in the resistance movement for more than 45 years and served as general secretary of the KNPP and prime minister of Karenni government.

His daughter, Maw Se Mar, told Mizzima, ‘He could not speak, and he had to breathe with a respirator. After meeting with all of his children, the oxygen pipe was removed and he died at 3:25 p.m.’

Khun Hte Bu Peh graduated from Rangoon University in 1960 in political science. During his life, he worked to compile an English-Karenni dictionary. He had reached the letter ‘R’ but could not complete the work, his daughter said.

‘His dream was to improve the Karenni script. He didn’t call our written language literature, it was still in script, he always said. We must try hard to uplift our written language to literature from the current script stage, he always said to us’, she said.

Party Secretary 2 Aung San Myint told Mizzima, ‘Our chairman never appeared sick, but he suffered from his disease himself without revealing his suffering and pain to anyone else. He lost his appetite just one or two weeks before being hospitalised. He died in this first ever hospitalisation’.

He served as chairman of the Ethnic Nationalities Council (ENC) of the Union of Burma and as a member of the Emergence of Federal Union.

KNPP central executive committee member and Home Affairs Department In-charge Khu Hte Bu said Khun Hte Bu Peh was born in Kay Lra village in Phrusoe Township in Karenni State. He held the view that Karenni State was an independent country in historical terms, but believed Karenni State should coexist with other ethnic nationalities because it was landlocked and had a small population. He said he believed in ethnic unity and the emergence of a ‘federal army’.

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