In the morning, I went to work ... and in the evening when I arrived home, my bed and tent were destroyed.
DOZENS of families formerly evicted from their homes in the Dey Krahorm community in central Phnom Penh said yesterday that the company that forced them off the land has now inexplicably torn down their replacement homes as well.
Mao Sothea, a 53-year-old community representative, said yesterday that a group of 58 relocated families have been living in Dangkor district’s Damnak Trayeung village since their July 2007 eviction, still waiting for proper resettlement.
She said that at about 5pm on Wednesday, staff from the 7NG company came to the site and tore down their tents. Local residents, she added, have no idea why the action was taken.
“The authorities agreed to give us land in Vihear Suor commune [in Kandal province’s Khsach Kandal district] in 2009, and until today, we have not received anything,” Mao Sothea said. “City Hall agreed to give us land in 2009. I wonder what is wrong with them. Why do they not give us the land?”
Mao Sothea said that in December 2009, a number of families had agreed to relocate to a site near Odong mountain in Kandal, but the 58 families chose to stay at Damnak Trayeung and be resettled later.
Sok Don, 61, yesterday accused the company of cheating her and other villagers.
“It’s a surprise for me, because in the morning, I went to work as a house maid in Phnom Penh, and in the evening when I arrived home, my bed and tent were destroyed,” she said.
Soth Sath, chief of Choam Chao commune in Dangkor district, said yesterday that a resolution for the remaining 58 families was an issue for 7NG to resolve.
7NG representatives could not be reached for comment yesterday.
Mann Chooeun, the former deputy Phnom Penh governor who dealt with the Dey Krahorm evictions, declined to comment yesterday.
Hundreds of residents of the Dey Krahorm community in Chamkarmon district were driven from their homes in a violent pre-dawn operation in January 2009 that has become one of the capital’s most notorious forced evictions in recent years.