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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - In and out: a revised CMAC scorecard

In and out: a revised CMAC scorecard

The CMAC reforms unveiled on Dec 3 coincided with a flurry of changes affecting CMAC

management personnel.

Out: Ieng Mouly, Chairman of CMAC's Governing Council followed up a bruising

Q&A session at the National Assembly on Dec 2 in which legislators questioned

his competence and urged his resignation by permanently vacating his office at CMAC

headquarters and moving to an undisclosed location. Mouly retains his post but his

relocation was stipulated by CMAC's reform process, which has substantially diminished

the influence of CMAC's Governing Council on the organizations day-to-day activities.

Out: Bill Van Ree, CMAC's UNDP Programme Coordinator shocked CMAC personnel

last week by announcing he would not be renewing his probationary three month contract.

Although Van Ree had won near-universal respect amongst CMAC staff for his self-effacing

personal style and a tireless commitment for reforming the troubled agency, he was

criticized by some for being "culturally insensitive".

Nonsense, according to one CMAC insider. "He wasn't a yes-man, he waved his

arms, pointed at people and expected responsible people to take responsibility. One

day he led the treasurer to the window, pointed to all the land cruisers parked in

front of the building and said 'You see those vehicles? Each one of them could buy

a farm for a Khmer family - get rid of them.' It was beautiful."

Another CMAC source said that a major contributing factor to Van Ree's departure

was conflict with the head of UNDP, Ms. Dominique McAdams. It is understood Van Ree

found her uncooperative and her managment style abrasive.

Out of the Frying Pan: The former management staff of DU3 in Kampot are looking

at jail time for some dodgey entrepreneurship that helped ex-KR general Chouk Rin

get his own banana plantation on CMAC-demined land. CMAC Director General Khem Sophoan

told the Post on Dec 3 that an investigation by the National Assembly Inspections

Committee on the DU3 fiasco has found that DU3 personnel "were even guiltier

than originally suspected". Donors have stipulated that criminal prosecution

of wrongdoers in the DU3 scandal is a prerequisite for a resumption of full-funding

for 2000.

In: Eck Bolin, suspended Acting Director of Finance has been cleared of allegations

of financial wrongdoing by a CMAC disciplinary committee. Bolin had been suspended

in August at donors insistence.

In: Niem Chouleng, former Deputy Director General remains a member of CMAC's

Governing Council but has had his monthly salary reduced from $1200 to $450 as a

reprimand for the loss of $75,000 in Royal Government funding to CMAC. Chouleng pleaded

innocent in the scam, maintaining that the money went to kickbacks to Ministry of

Finance officials to secure promised funding. A portion of Chouleng's salary will

be automatically deducted each month, presumably for the remainder of his CMAC career,

in a move to recoup some of the lost cash.

Whereabouts Unknown: H.E. Sam Sotha and Ms. Dominique McAdams have successfully

avoided making any public comment on the state of the CMAC reform process, in spite

of their respective roles of Royal Advisor on CMAC Affairs and Resident Representative

for UNDP, which administers CMAC's donor trust fund. CMAC insiders told the Post

that the Canadian government's decision to fund CMAC's impending Level One Mine Contamination

Survey directly rather than through CMAC's UNDP trust fund had been interpreted by

McAdams as "an insult."



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