Fat Myanmar cops given 4 months to shape up – or face charges

Myanmar’s hefty law enforcers have a mixed reaction to an order that all overweight Myanmar police officers lose weight within four months or be charged.

The order, passed down from the Home Affairs Ministry to police everywhere, said officers who do not reach an acceptable body mass index will be charged with breaching code of conduct, according to Lt. Gen. U Sein Win from the State Police Department. Several cops asked about the order did not sound especially optimistic.

“We will have to put effort into this, especially on weekends,” said officer Aye Myint Naing of the Pyinmana Police Department located outside the capital. “Then we will take measurements to see if it actually works or not. And it is important to conduct a proper diet plan.”

Another officer from Naypyidaw, who asked not to be named, said it was impossible to shed so much weight within four months. He said that due the job’s stress, exhaustion, tension and resulting insomnia, most officers become obese by their 30s.

“I don’t know how to tell them to lose weight since everybody here seems pretty busy all the time,” said another Naypyidaw cop.

Officer Moe Kyaw of No. 11 Tanintharyi’s traffic subdivision said the order to lose weight aims to match international police force standards. The deputy traffic chief said he’s given some time to his fat cops to workout in the evening.

“We are currently training those officers with physical exercises such as jogging, push-ups, chinlone (a traditional caneball sport),” he added.

The order has also been directed to the Prison Department, Fire Service Department and other particular units under the Ministry of Home Affairs, added the State Police Department.

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