THE Kingdom’s newly formed Anticorruption Unit is scheduled to release the first report on its progress in combating corruption later this week, after holding meetings today with civil representatives to discuss graft complaints submitted by the public.
Keo Remy, newly appointed spokesman of the National Anticorruption Council said that the ACU’s president, Om Yentieng, would meet with NGO workers today.
“I don’t know about the topics of discussion, but I think that they may potentially discuss the work that the ACU has done so far, such as a mechanisms for safeguarding individuals who to file a complaint to the ACU,” he said.
He added that following the meeting, the ACU planned to release its first public report, if the NAC is able to finalise the ACU’s most recent internal progress reports. “I think that if the report is approved by the NAC, we will be able to release it on September 28 with the participation of the media,” Keo Remy said.
The Civic Alliance for Social Accountability, a coalition of 11 nongovernmental organisations, confirmed that it planned to meet with graft officials today to submit a compilation of corruption complaints against 80 officials accused of levying illegal road taxes.
San Chey, the Cambodia-based network fellow of the Affiliated Network for Social Accountability in East Asia and Pacific, a regional umbrella group, said that at least 10 members of the coalition would attend the talks in order to seek its full cooperation in fighting against corruption in Cambodia.
“We will discuss with the head of the ACU about the possibility of being a partner of the ACU and submit corruption complaints related to road tax collection filed by Cambodian people in 14 provinces,” he said.
San Chey said that road-tax collection agents had forced people to pay as much as US$1 million in illegal road taxes every year. “We have to be a partner of the ACU in order to make sure that our work will encourage government’s tax agency to change their behaviour,” he said.