Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Excavation prompts concerns in Pailin

Excavation prompts concerns in Pailin

Excavation prompts concerns in Pailin

The ongoing excavation of the Phnom Preal hills in Pailin’s Sala Krao district has raised questions among villagers about its true purpose, despite authorities maintaining the work is purely for road construction reasons.

According to villager Om Sam Ol excavation of the hills had been ongoing for weeks on end, prompting her to believe that soil traders were colluding with local authorities to sell the soil for personal gains under the guise of road construction.

“The hills – located next to one another – are being damaged severely. They will physically disappear if no expert institution prohibits or halts [their actions],” she said.

Echoing Sam Ol’s sentiment was villager Choeub Song, who said that an unusually large amount of soil was being excavated.

“We admit that they excavate the hill for building the road for public interests,” he said. “But the soil that they used for the road construction is actually very little [and] less than the amount of soil that they sell to private companies and other villagers.”

The claims were vehemently denied by Stung Trang commune chief Keo Romdet, who said that the excavation was authorised.

“With the agreement from involved departments, provincial authorities … offered the licence to local private companies to manage the road construction, and all vehicles are allowed to excavate the hills for building the road for the people,” he said.

However, Nob Saluch, a provincial environment evaluation official, said such extensive excavation works were “wrong” as the natural landforms may face collapse in the event of heavy rains.

“We are preparing to file a suggestion to the provincial hall, asking them to intervene and halt the excavation … to protect the natural mountains and ask them to find another location to excavate the soil for building the road,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hong Kong firm done buying Coke Cambodia

    Swire Coca-Cola Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed Swire Pacific Ltd, on November 25 announced that it had completed the acquisition of The Coca-Cola Co’s bottling business in Cambodia, as part of its ambitions to expand into the Southeast Asian market. Swire Coca-Cola affirmed

  • Cambodia's Bokator now officially in World Heritage List

    UNESCO has officially inscribed Cambodia’s “Kun Lbokator”, commonly known as Bokator, on the World Heritage List, according to Minister of Culture and Fine Arts Phoeurng Sackona in her brief report to Prime Minister Hun Sen on the night of November 29. Her report, which was

  • NagaWorld union leader arrested at airport after Australia trip

    Chhim Sithar, head of the Labour Rights Supported Union of Khmer Employees at NagaWorld integrated casino resort, was arrested on November 26 at Phnom Penh International Airport and placed in pre-trial detention after returning from a 12-day trip to Australia. Phnom Penh Municipal Court Investigating Judge

  • Angkor Beer, 30 Years of Prestige and Still Counting

    Let’s celebrate 30 years of prestige with Angkor Beer. In this 2022, Angkor Beer is 30 years old and has been staying with Cambodian hearts in all circumstances. Head of core beer portfolio, EmYuthousaid, “We have been with Cambodians for three decades now. We, ANGKOR Beer, pride

  • Sub-Decree approves $30M for mine clearance

    The Cambodian government established the ‘Mine-Free Cambodia 2025 Foundation’, and released an initial budget of $30 million. Based on the progress of the foundation in 2023, 2024 and 2025, more funds will be added from the national budget and other sources. In a sub-decree signed by Prime Minister Hun Sen

  • Two senior GDP officials defect to CPP

    Two senior officials of the Grassroots Democratic Party (GDP) have asked to join the Cambodian People’s Party (CPP), after apparently failing to forge a political alliance in the run-up to the 2023 general election. Yang Saing Koma, chairman of the GDP board, and Lek Sothear,