Cops made top brass, en masse

80 officers were promoted to one-star generals or higher
Police officers attend a ceremony yesterday at the Ministry of Interior in Phnom Penh where more than 80 officers were promoted to one-star generals or higher. Vireak Mai

Cops made top brass, en masse

A total of 81 officers were promoted into the already-teeming leadership of the National Police yesterday, with some reaching the rank of three-star general, a senior official presiding over the ceremony at the Ministry of Interior in Phnom Penh said.

Em Sam An, a secretary of state at the ministry, also announced at the same ceremony that top police officials Mok Chito, Touch Naruth, Him Yam and Chhuong Senghak would become deputy commissioners of the National Police.

Leaving out those officials, the promotions made 10 senior police officers lieutenant generals (three stars); 30, major generals (two stars); and 41 brigadier generals (one star).

Both the top officials and the 81 officers were given their new titles in a separate sub-decree and royal decree, respectively, but the decisions were made public in yesterday’s ceremony.

Sam An, who presided over the ceremony, said the positions and ranks were given within the framework of a merit system for each officer who worked hard and whose work was recognised by the government.

Those officers, he said, must continue to successfully serve the people, halt “irregularities” in society and push for national development.

“[We] must add more leaders to the deputy commissioner position to have more power and more effectiveness. We are the doers,” he said.

In an apparent reference to the opposition party’s boycott of parliament at the end of 2013 until July of 2014, Sam An said that while mass demonstrations are no longer an everyday occurrence, Cambodia faces numerous ills that cannot be ignored, including robbery, theft and even online gambling.

“Before, they [used to] play simple [games], but now online lottery and gambling are so rife everywhere that it affects security of the people,” he said. “The danger is that betting on the lottery is dreaming.”

He also cited the possibility of terrorism spreading to Cambodia, and urged officers to be on alert.

“This is a hot issue, so our officers must improve our ability to catch the movement or situation,” he said.

Cambodian civil society has long lambasted the government for its speedy mass promotions, many of which aren’t warranted, critics say.

Ny Chakrya, head of the Human Rights Monitoring Section for rights group Adhoc, said he was surprised by the promotions of officers, calling for the government to think deeply before elevating its personnel or else risk encouraging them to violate human rights.

“Do not take cracking down on demonstrations as an achievement worthy of promotion,” he said. “It is an achievement of a human rights violation.… It can [become] a culture of encouraging human rights violations.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Guards protest dismissals, reject claims of sharing naked photos of child

    Some 20 former security guards at the US Embassy in Phnom Penh protested on Tuesday against their dismissal. They accused their employers of falsely claiming they had viewed and shared child pornography from their mobile phones as grounds for their termination. In total, 32 personnel were dismissed

  • We’re going to Wisney World!

    More than 6,000 mostly Chinese attendees witnessed the inauguration ceremony of a $1 billion Sihanoukville resort project called Wisney World in the capital on Wednesday. The event on Koh Pich, attended by several senior Cambodian government officials, is a joint venture between China’s AMC International and

  • Funcinpec urges probe into deadly Preah Sihanouk accident

    THE Funcinpec party has urged the government, especially the Ministry of Interior, to investigate the traffic accident in Preah Sihanouk province which left Prince Norodom Ranariddh badly injured and his wife Ouk Phalla dead. Funcinpec Vice President You Hokry told reporters at Botum Votey pagoda,

  • Gov’t continues China tilt as ties with the US slide on ‘interference’ in Kingdom’s internal affairs

    CHINA has granted some $131 million in aid to the Cambodian military. It comes as yet another sign that the Kingdom is strengthening strategic ties with its Asian neighbour to counter increasingly cold relations with the United States. The aid was announced as part of a