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Prey Veng CITA chief sued for defamation

PREY Veng provincial court has charged the provincial director of the Cambodian Independent Teachers Association (CITA) with defamation after he accused a local schoolteacher of selling land owned by a school in Peamro district.

Chin Rithy, 41, a teacher at Neak Loeung secondary school, is accused of defaming the school’s principal, Yoeun Sovuthy, after writing letters to provincial and municipal officials accusing the administrator of selling a 6-by-21-metre plot belonging to the school, said CITA President Rong Chhun.

“The defamation charge against him is unjust and unacceptable because what he wrote to the provincial and municipal department of education was based on fact, with evidence that fences were built around school land,” Rong Chhun said.

Chin Rithy also described the case against him as “unjust”, adding that he was acting in the best interest of the school.

He argued “that the principal conspired with Pang Sameth, a high school teacher, to build a fence around [a plot] of land, but the prosecutor ... didn’t pay any attention to my confirmation,” he said.

Rong Chhun said he expected a verdict in the case on Wednesday. Yoeun Sovuthy and Pang Sameth could not be reached for comment on Thursday.

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