According to one Burmese witness, the city officials bulldozed one storage addition from the ground and they posted notice letter on another addition storage building with the instruction not to enter or reside inside.
MoeMaKa News Group learnt from one Burmese residence from the neighborhood that the monks from the monastery were trying to get all the proper paper and application to make the monastery become registered religious place and it was still pending at the city. He also told MoeMaKa that the monks and the Buddhist followers were also trying hard to get the permits and paper works done for the additional constructions used as storage space and temporary shelter for the guests to the monastery since 2 years back. According to some Burmese residents, the cost and the fees for process and application would be in ten of thousands of US dollars but due to the economic downturns, the funds to raise and maintain the non profit Buddhist monastery with the volunteers and charity of the Burmese community could not make it to the scheduled expectation. It was an unfortunate and unforeseen circumstance that would be considered as a sad and sorry incident to both Burmese Buddhist community and the City office, said one of the Burmese to MoeMaKa.
When contacted, residence monk (Sayadaw), U Kusala told MoeMaKa that he does not want any upset or misunderstanding among the Burmese and other neighbors and he will be arranging the meeting with the Burmese community to resolve the issue according to rules and regulation with the city. He also added that as the newcomer Burmese community were new to this country, the community here and the rules, regulation and environments, there had been some misunderstanding, incidents with the community, the law and orders in Fort Wayne. However, he also added that with the solidarity and cooperation among the Burmese and the community, they would be able to resolve for better tomorrow.
When we contacted Mar Mar Aye, one of the renowned famous Burmese singers and artist living in exile, she told MoeMaKa that she felt confidence the Burmese community would be able to find best way if they discuss and work out all together.
Fort Wayne has been since 10 years ago, become one of the resettlement city for Burmese refugee people who were forced to flee their country, Burma due to the Burmese regime’s political oppression and crackdowns. It was arranged by the US government and the city of Fort Wayne. As most of the Burmese community were devout Buddhist, they tried with their best and saving to establish Burmese Buddhist monasteries to have their worships and also to have their community place for their daily traditional practices. According to Burmese residence, they had been relying on the works available from the industrial plants and manufacturing factories around the city but recently since 2008, they were also been suffering job loss and having hard time to make ends meet. The monastery also tried its best to raise fund to keep afloat during the hard time by hosting Burmese traditional performance festival and music stage show with the Burmese community.
(Photo – Khin Maung Lay, 2008, Fort Wayne, at Zaytawun Monastery, group photos of Burmese community at one of the Burmese festivals)