Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - CSD staff protest actions of new executive director

CSD staff protest actions of new executive director

CSD staff protest actions of new executive director

090722_05
Former CSD Executive Director Theary Seng pictured in this file photo.

Petition claims Vi Houi blocked access to bank accounts used for salaries and operational expenses and issued warnings to staffers.

AROUND 50 employees at the Centre for Social Development (CSD) have signed a petition protesting the actions of its new executive director, claiming he froze the organisation's bank accounts and issued warnings to four senior staff members who tried to withdraw funds.

On June 9, city authorities removed CSD Executive Director Theary Seng from her post after Phnom Penh Municipal Court approved a temporary injunction filed by Vi Huoi, who was appointed in her place.

But CSD employees said Vi Huoi had prevented access to company accounts used for salaries and operational expenses, adding that they did not know when the accounts would again become accessible.

Staff representative Chan Than said Vi Huoi met with CSD staff on Monday morning and told them that he had the right "to close or open all the bank accounts of the CSD" because he was the organisation's executive director.

Soeurng Chandara, head of the CSD finance unit, said he was one of "around 50" CSD employees who signed a petition of protest against Vi Huoi because they were "upset [with] and afraid" of his behaviour.

"If he closes those accounts, he freezes the whole operation of the centre," said Ang Udom, Theary Seng's lawyer.

NOBODY HAS BEEN FIRED YET, BUT THEY HAVE BEEN WARNED OF BEING FIRED.

He added that four senior staff members had "received warnings"after trying to conduct day-to-day transactions using organisation accounts.
"Nobody has been fired yet, but they have been warned of being fired," he said.

Appeal coming
Ang Udom also said that Theary Seng plans to appeal the injunction filed by Vi Huoi and that he expects to file the documents this week.

He maintained that the Ministry of Interior, not the Municipal Court, has jurisdiction over NGOs and civil society groups, adding that the ministry had already rejected a complaint by Vi Huoi against Theary Seng in August 2008.

"[Theary Seng] is a part of a board which has been legally recognised by the Ministry of Interior," he said, adding that the court had "interfered" with the ministry's ruling.

Theary Seng has called the injunction a "moot issue" because of the ministry's prior ruling.

"This is an issue of harassment and abuse of process and reflects once again the absurdity, the brokenness of the judiciary in Cambodia," she said in an email.

Vi Huoi could not be reached for comment Monday or Tuesday.

MOST VIEWED

  • Man arrested for fake PM endorsement

    The owner of currency exchange company GCG Asia Co Ltd was temporarily detained by the court yesterday for attempted fraud after Prime Minister Hun Sen reacted to the company using his name and pictures to allege his endorsement of the firm. Phnom Penh Municipal Court

  • Sihanoukville authority orders structure dismantled

    The Preah Sihanouk provincial administration has ordered owners of two unauthorised construction sites to immediately dismantle them and warned of legal action if the owners failed to comply. Ly Chet Niyom, development management and construction bureau chief at the provincial hall, told The Post on

  • Police seek arrest of Chinese ‘gang’

    Cambodian police remain on the lookout for 20 Chinese nationals who earlier this month posted a video clip threatening to stoke insecurity in Preah Sihanouk province, though the Chinese Embassy in Phnom Penh maintained the group posed no threats to Cambodia’s national security. National Police

  • Rapper deletes song critical of Cambodian social issues

    A young musician has deleted from Facebook and YouTube a rap song that was critical of Cambodia’s social issues and announced that he will stop singing the song after officials visited his home in Siem Reap province and allegedly gave him a warning. Provincial