Dr. Aye Maung, who is president of the party said, "We submitted our application to the Rakhine State Election Commission on 2 September to hold the Saradaw Ottama Day ceremony, but the EC refused to give permission. But we will hold a ceremony in our headquarters to mark Ottama Day despite the EC's refusal."
Saradaw Ottama was an Arakanese monk who sacrificed throughout his life for Burmese independence from British rule. He is considered the first architect of the independence movement because he began to organize Burmese people to fight against the British for independence.
"U Ottama is our great leader who was working not only for Arakanese but for all the Burmese people. We have been unable to hold the memorial day for Ottama for many decades, even though Burma gained independence. So now the RNDP is a political party and it is the time to work toward democracy. So we thought we would hold a memorial ceremony for Ottama to honor his sacrifice for Burma's independence," Dr. Aye said.
According to a party source, the memorial ceremony for Ottama Day will have started at 9 am today, with all party leaders paying respects to a portrait of Ottama. At 1 pm, the party will present speeches about Ottama's lifelong sacrifice for Burma's independence.
A party leader said, "We invited 100 town elders to attend the ceremony. Some historians and lecturers will deliver speeches about Saradaw Ottama at the ceremony."
Arakanese people as well as other Burmese citizens who respect Ottama will hold ceremonies for the 71st anniversary of Saradaw Ottama Day in several countries, including Bangladesh, India, Japan, Malaysia, Thailand, and the USA.