Thirty-five instructors from Sittwe University in the Arakan State capital have been dismissed for joining the civil disobedience movement, according to a letter signed by Dr. Khin Maung Zaw, acting rector of the University.
The letter released on May 6 said those absent on May 3 without excuse were dismissed from that day onward.
A list of staff joining the CDM is being compiled and sent to the Ministry of Education daily, and the 35 teachers dismissed were included on the list, an official of Sittwe University told DMG.
“We have to send a list of teachers who are joining the CDM and not joining the CDM. The ministry has instructed us to dismiss the striking teachers and conduct an investigation. We have been told to release the letter announcing their dismissal,” the official said.
While the 35 staffers have ostensibly been dismissed, proceedings going forward are unclear, the official added.
Two professors and four associate professors are among the 35 faculty members who were dismissed from Sittwe University.
Ko Toe Toe Aung, chair of Sittwe University Students’ Union, said the affected staff should not be dismissed because they did not commit any offence.
“Those who have seized power at the moment might have an intention to oppress them. If the teachers face any difficulty, we will have to help them. Additionally, authorities need to consider whether their actions were right or wrong,” he said.
In February, some Sittwe University faculty protested on campus by holding placards against the dictatorship that took power on February 1.
As many as 339 instructors at Yangon University have also been dismissed on grounds of absence without leave, according to a letter released on May 5. The dismissals include many professors and lecturers.
The military regime’s push to reopen schools is facing growing resistance, with anti-regime protesters calling for an education boycott as part of the nationwide civil disobedience movement against the junta.