Home Insider Insider Opinion The Yangon Chief Minister Explained about His Notorious Watch

The Yangon Chief Minister Explained about His Notorious Watch

Yangon Chief Minister Phyo Min Thein held a press conference on November 10 to explain about his famous watch which is the main topic in an article published by Eleven Media.

On November 6, Daily Eleven newspaper published an English article written by the Than Htut Aung, CEO of Eleven Media Group who accused Yangon Region Chief Minister H.E Phyo Min Thein of taking the watch as a bribe. The article highlighted the newly elected minister, making between $2,500 $3,500 monthly, being seen wearing a $100,000 Patek Philippe watch. The person who allegedly gave this ‘gift’ to the minister has won the tender to build a “new city”, in the south of Yangon, after the NLD came to power. The person was also recently released from jail after serving time for his involvement in a drug case. The CEO, later, reposted the article in Myanmar on his Facebook account.

At the press conference, the minister took off his watch and showed it to journalist along with photos of him wearing the same watch in the past. He also declared his watch is a Rolex worth roughly $3,000, which is ‘more affordable’ (not a Patek Philippe), and was given to him by his wife before he was appointed the Chief Minister. He added “The Yangon Region government has filed charges against Eleven Media Group and its CEO for violating the Telecommunications laws in the afternoon today at the Tamwe Township police station”.

Maung Weit, a businessman who is widely believed to be the man who has given the watch also held a press conference on same day to discuss about article. He said: “I have never given a Patek Philippe watch to any minister, especially regional minister Phyo Min Thein.”. He said although the article did not mention him by name, its description of the article vividly pointed to him, since only three companies were involved in the “new city” tender and among them he was the only person recently released from prison.