The Samrong district administration in Takeo province instructed authorities in three of its communes to collect data on people who would voluntarily pay for waste collection services along National Road 3 to improve area living standards.

District governor Ket Mao told The Post that he instructed authorities in Khvav, Boeung Tranh Kang Choeung and Boeung Tranh Kang Tbong communes to determine the number of families who are willing to voluntarily pay for waste collection services from the National Road 3 dump site to the north of Phnom Chiso.

“My deputy district governor and commune chiefs met again last week with residents and village chiefs, discussing how to get the data on how many families are willing to pay, because we already have a company lined up as the service provider and we are waiting for this information from people,” Mao said.

He added that in the past people did not seem willing to pay for the waste collection service on a monthly basis and that wasn’t just the people living along the national road but some wealthier people near the Bot Roka market who weren’t storing or disposing of waste properly, either.

“They throw waste into the market instead and when the market’s manager deploys staff to watch for this activity, they dispose their waste at this or that place away from there, so our authorities are then forced to collect or burn it. We’ve issued notices banning them from doing this but so far they aren’t cooperating,” he said.

In order to tackle the issue, the authorities are trying to educate area residents to stop littering and dumping garbage. If they don’t change their ways soon, Mao said, they would start fining them and he would install cameras around the market to figure out who was responsible.

Khvav commune chief Eav Buth said on January 4 that the waste services sign-up list was an ongoing process but he wasn’t yet certain of the total number of people living along the national road in his commune.

“People from five villages in my commune are living along the road and I think most would like proper disposal of waste in front of their homes with the company collecting and dumping it,” he said.

Pork Phay, chief of Pich Changva village in Boeung Tranh Kang Choeung commune said 50 families from his village are living along the national road and that he had surveyed them on their interest already and sent the results to the district authorities.

Phay said that the people needed further education about waste collection services from the commune, district and waste collection company – but his villagers mainly wanted to discuss what the fees for the waste collection would be for each household before making a decision.