Interior Minister Sar Kheng has been asked to intervene on behalf of a guard at Pursat provincial prison who was allegedly punished by the prison’s director for taking leave to spend with his hospitalised son.The request for the minister’s intervention was made by Rong Chhun, the high-profile social activist and president of the Cambodian Independent Teachers Association. Rong Chhun said he received the complaint from the guard on October 29, urging him to intervene in a dispute with the prison director, Ngoun Lay. The complaint by guard Nou Tieng accuses the prison’s director of treating his staff like inmates. Nou Tieng said he was unjustly punished for taking three days off. He said that after his son was hospitalised on October 17, he put in an application for three days’ leave. Permission was granted by both the director and the deputy director of the corrections off-ice, but prison director Ngoun Lay overruled them, he said. As punishment, Nou Tieng was shifted from the health section to a cell block for one month, he said. Ngoun Lay, however, said yesterday that he was merely following regulations set by the Ministry of Interior, which say that prison staff can have only one day’s leave.
Pursat Prison: Staff treated as inmates, guard says