On 2 June 1999, the Kingdom of Bhutan celebrated the 25th Anniversary of the reign of His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck, Bhutan’s beloved monarch. It was also in this year that Internet and TV was introduced in the country. During the celebrations in Thimphu which took place in Changlemithang, as the pioneer in the sector, I was elected to represent the private IT sector.
I attended one of the meetings for the planning and organization of the event - headed by Dasho Aum Yangki, the then Finance Secretary. One of the other Committee Members representing Ministry of Trade, Industries & Forests, as it was known then, was Haap Yangley of the Department of Industries.
Aum Yangki started the meeting by saying that it was now time to put together plans and programs, including sector-wise budgetary estimates. However, she cautioned that there was absolute need for every one to be stringent and judicious when working out estimates since the government was working on a tight budget. To this Haap Yangley stood up and responded as follows:
“Poen gii baangzoe na tiru zobi se meysa mena Dasho”
“There is no such thing as the King’s treasury going empty”
Aum Yangki looked at Haap Yangley and sternly reminded him to get serious.
The above line of Yangley came to mind because of what His Majesty the King has recently committed to his subjects by way of Kidu. It is simply incredible the monetary value of His Majesty’s gift to the people of Bhutan. Nothing we do will even come close to what His Majesty has done.
But I can think of one thing that we can do - to demonstrate that we care and appreciate and are willing to do our part. What we can do is to offer to end the shameful Vehicle Quota system. Doing so will save the country hundreds of millions in perpetuity, while at the same time it will be an act of restitution of our lost ethics and morality.
Doing away with this shameful practice that ends in illegal transections can afford the country much needed respite during these times of difficulty.