Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Former CNRP activist nabbed for offering online English classes




Former CNRP activist nabbed for offering online English classes

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Keo Thai was arrested at home for teaching online. Supplied

Former CNRP activist nabbed for offering online English classes

Authorities detained a high school teacher in Kampong Chhnang province on Thursday after he was caught conducting online classes despite the fact that schools had been ordered to close temporarily to prevent Covid-19 infections.

Keo Thai teaches at Boribo High School in Kampong Chhnang and is a member of the Cambodian Independent Teachers Association (Cita) in the province as well as a former member of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP).

He was arrested and sent to Phnom Penh on Thursday after announcing to offer online English classes, his daughter Keo Rachana said.

She said police surrounded their house at 6am and told Thai to come out, but he refused to do so because the authorities did not have an arrest warrant.

But at about 7am, she said, the provincial court prosecutor reached the house.

“I asked for an arrest warrant but he said that he is the prosecutor. He confiscated three phones which belong to me and my parents. Then, he wrote a letter regarding the confiscation.

“He said if I do not allow him to check the house, he would further sue my family as he had already had an arrest warrant,” she said.

When Thai came down, provincial authorities put him in their police car, while Rachana was left wondering why he was arrested.

“My father stopped teaching extra classes when the Minstry of Education ordered all schools closed to prevent the spread of Covid-19. He then began teaching online,” Rachana said.

The arrest came a day after Prime Minister Hun Sen said a teacher and former Cita member had announced on social media the opening of extra classes.

Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport spokesman Ros Sovichea declined to comment on the arrest, and referred reporters to an annoucement that the ministry made on Thursday.

The ministry’s annoucement said: “Teaching extra classes is banned in the period of fighting against Covid-19 infections. The ministry will take action against offenders.”

While confirming Thai’s arrest, National Police spokesman Chhay Kim Khoeun said the teacher is involved in many other cases.

“He was a suspect who incited and conspired with traitors, especially when he was an activist. He was on the court’s [black] list but was spared any legal action by the government. Instead, he was put under court observation.

“After he was forgiven, he didn’t seem to change. He even created more problems by producing inciteful news, which means he did not change.

“He is still inciteful. He has been sent to Phnom Penh to be legally processed and sent to court,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Body of woman killed in Bangkok returns

    The Cambodian embassy in Thailand is working to repatriate the body of a casino dealer who was shot dead in Bangkok on Monday night. Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation spokesman Kuy Kuong told The Post on Wednesday that officials are preparing paperwork to

  • Chikungunya hits 15 provinces, says gov’t

    Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said on Thursday that the chikungunya outbreak in the Kingdom has spread to 15 provinces. Some 1,700 people are now suspected to have the disease. Vandine urged people to prevent its further spread by eliminating shelters for the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes

  • Gov’t exempts visa A and B holders from Covid fees

    Airline passengers who are diplomats and officials of international organisations holding Type A and B visas for travel to Cambodia are exempted from paying Covid-19 testing fees, said the Ministry of Health in its latest adjustment of rules on Wednesday. Health Minister Mam Bun Heng

  • Bill covering dress code draws ire

    Ministry of Interior secretary of state Ouk Kim Lek responded on Tuesday to criticism concerning a draft law that would ban women from wearing overly revealing clothing, saying that input from all parties will be considered as the law moves through the promulgation process. Several

  • What’s the deal with Cambodia and China’s FTA?

    Cambodia’s Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with China kicks off a series of FTAs in future but for now, critics wonder what else the parties could bring to the table apart from what it already has to date By the end of this year, Cambodia

  • Police arrest 29 Chinese for PP kidnapping

    Phnom Penh Military Police arrested 29 Chinese nationals on kidnapping charges on Wednesday. The suspects are said to have abducted three other Chinese nationals from a hotel in Chaktomuk commune, Daun Penh district. The operation took place on Wednesday and was led by two deputy commanders –