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Battambang lecturers in graft claim

Battambang lecturers in graft claim

About 20 lecturers at Battambang University have accused  Dean Touch Visal Sok, of corruption and partisanship in the management of the school.

Chhim Kimly, 37, a lecturer at the university who says she has been suspended from her post, said yesterday that a majority of the lecturers don’t support the dean’s leadership and further accuse him of
mismanaging school funds and showing favouritism in the assignment of teaching schedules.

“The dean suspended me from teaching for nearly two years because I disagreed with his leadership,” Chhim Kimly said. She added that the dean has refused to provide details of how university funds are used.

“When we ask how school funds are being administered, he just says that money is being spent for the development of the university, but we don’t see any development.”

Another teacher who spoke on condition of anonymity said that teachers filed a complaint with the Ministry of Education in October but have yet to receive an official response.

The teacher said that lecturers who support the dean get to teach 20 to 30 classes per term, while those who don’t are assigned only one or two, thereby affecting their income. He said teachers have also been warned not to speak to the media.

“I want the Ministry of Education to remove this dean from the university and the Anticorruption Unit to investigate the case,” he said, adding that teachers also plan to file a complaint to Prime Minister Hun Sen’s cabinet.

Touch Visal Sok said on Wednesday that the accusations against him were unfounded.

“[Teachers] say something bad in order to damage the reputation of this famous school, which is managed by me,” he said, adding that he has no fear of the accusations because he has done nothing wrong.

Nea Sophan, who identified himself as manager of the staff department at the Ministry of Education, said yesterday that he received the lecturers’ complaint and was working on it.

“The ministry is investigating these claims,” he said.

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