As officials chip away at houses, residents are demanding better compensation than a plot of land at the relocation site.
House breakers take down houses that were in the way of a City Hall road widening project for Russey Keo's Hanoi Road.
RESIDENTS of the Phnom Penh Thmey commune, situated along Russey Keo's Hanoi Road, have applied for compensation of both cash and land ahead of the demolition of further homes as the city's road-widening project gets under way.
City officials began demolishing homes, fences and stalls at Teuk Thla commune this month as work began to widen the road to 30 metres along four kilometres of its length.
Phnom Penh Thmey commune resident Tey Narim said although they had been offered replacement land in Thnot Chrum village, which stands on a flood plain, the sites had no water or electricity.
"District Governor Khoung Sreng told people that the authorities would issue a notice informing people when they will start working in our area, so people need to be aware and decide on how to deal with the resettlement policy," he said.
Meanwhile Im Roeun, the resident at Teuk Thla whose house was entirely demolished, has filed a lawsuit against Khoung Sreng. Im Roeun refused the authorities' offer of a 32-square-metre plot at Thnot Chrum and wants compensation of 7 million riels (US$1,700) and a replacement house near where her old home stood.
Residents without water
The lawsuit, a copy of which was obtained by the Post, was filed at the municipal court last Thursday.
"Nowadays, I am sleeping on the ground under the shelter of the neighbours' houses," Im Roeun wrote in her three-page deposition. "I have no water, no toilet and no kitchen supplies."
Governor Khoung Sreng said he was unaware of the lawsuit but said it was her right to complain. He added that the authorities' policy was only to compensate those whose houses were entirely demolished, but that those residents of the other 10 homes at Teuk Thla who had lost up to 90 percent of their houses could negotiate to accept land in Thnot Chrum.
"Thnot Chrum relocation site is a good choice because it has water and electricity," he said.
"People who build on the pavements are on public land, which must be handed back when it is needed for development," he added.