Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Complaint in Koh Kong over destroyed crops

Complaint in Koh Kong over destroyed crops

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Villagers protest on Saturday to stop the environmental officers from building a pole fence in the protected area in Koh Kong province. Photo supplied

Complaint in Koh Kong over destroyed crops

Some 100 villagers in Koh Kong province’s Thma Bang district removed warning posts put up by environmental rangers and a conservation NGO around land that had been allegedly cleared by the residents since 2013 for farming, filing a complaint against the NGO for allegedly destroying their crops.

Wildlife Alliance and the rangers have been clearing banana trees planted by villagers on 600 hectares of forestland in three villages, saying the land belonged to the protected Southern Cardamom National Park. On Friday, they put up warning posts asking villagers not to use the land for logging or planting crops.

But residents of Trapaing Chhoeu Tray village took down the posts and filed a complaint against the NGO with local authorities and rights group Licadho.

Vong Sari, 26, said the forest had already been logged and that villagers had been planting bananas on the land since 2013. “My banana plantation, around 1 hectare, was slashed down and the post was displayed on the land. When they slashed it down, they did not inform us,” he said yesterday.

While Wildlife Alliance officials could not be reached, Mon Phalla, provincial director of the environmental department, said the villagers had illegally cleared the land, and maintained the crops were cut with villagers’ consent.

Licadho’s In Kongchit said the villagers had just cleared some land behind their homes for farming, not for illegal activities like logging or poaching, adding that the group would investigate the case and ask authorities for intervention.

MOST VIEWED

  • Siem Reap drain canal now ‘mangrove’ promenade

    A more than half a kilometre long stretch of canal in Siem Reap has been covered and turned into a promenade to attract visitors, said Ly Rasmey, secretary of state at the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction, on September 16. The new pedestrianised

  • Angkor wildlife, aquarium park still to open October

    The Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium complex about 30km southeast of Siem Reap town with initial total investment of more than $70 million is reportedly still on track for an end-October opening. The park is located on a 100ha plot along National Road 6 in Kbon village, Khchas

  • Final verdicts for Khmer Rouge leaders ‘vital’ for next generation

    Nearly a decade after the commencement of Case 002/02 against Khieu Samphan back in 2014, the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) is now set to deliver its final verdict for the former Khmer Rouge head of state. The Supreme Court Chamber of the ECCC,

  • Defence minister reaffirms Kingdom’s staunch support for One-China policy

    Minister of National Defence General Tea Banh has reaffirmed Cambodia’s unwavering support for the One-China policy. Tea Banh was speaking at the September 20 ceremonial handover of 117 vehicles and other military equipment donated by China’s defence ministry, held at Phnom Chumreay International Military Training

  • Deaths due to ‘lifestyle’ diseases rise in Kingdom

    The Ministry of Health has called on people to pay closer attention to their health to protect themselves from non-communicable diseases (NCDs) which it said have caused high rates of deaths in the country. Ministry secretary of state York Sambath made the call at a

  • Textile industry minimum wage now $200

    The official minimum wage for workers in textile-related sectors including garment, footwear, and travel goods for 2023 was pegged at $198, with Prime Minister Hun Sen stepping in to add $2 to the total, making it $200 per month. The Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training made the announcement