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Kratie governor killed in crash

The governor of Kratie province was killed in a traffic accident on Tuesday night when the car he was riding in flipped over as he was travelling back to his home from Phnom Penh.

Provincial deputy police chief Yorn Sovutha told the Post yesterday that 64-year-old Kham Phern, who had served as Kratie’s governor since 2004, died at the scene.

The driver of the vehicle was rushed to hospital and remains in critical condition, with injuries to his chest, ribs and back.

The driver lost control of the vehicle while attempting to negotiate a sharp turn in Kratie province’s Chhlong district, the deputy police chief added.

“Police are still investigating,” he said.

Ministry of Interior spokesman Khieu Sopheak told the Post yesterday that deputy provincial governor Sar Chamrong would serve as acting governor until a new governor was named.

Although he did not provide a timeline for the naming, he said it would happen “very soon”.

Government spokesman Phay Siphan said that, per protocol, the Ministry of Interior would send its nomination for Kham Phern’s successor to Prime Minister Hun Sen, who would then forward it to King Norodom Sihamoni for appointment.

When asked about possible nominations, Khieu Sopheak said it was “beyond his capacity to answer that question”.

Kham Phern’s funeral began yesterday and will last until Friday, when his body will be cremated.

The Takeo native leaves behind a wife and six children.

They could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Acting governor Sar Chamrong was also unable to be contacted.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lieng Sarith at sarith.lieng@phnompenhpost.com

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