Residents living in the old Angkor Chey building on the corner of Monivong Boulevard and Kampuchea Krom Boulevard in Prampi Makara district have expressed concerns after parts of the building crumbled, sending debris falling onto the road during a recent rainstorm.
Officials at the Phnom Penh Municipal Hall said the municipal administration has no plans to solve it and instead encouraged the roughly 65 families living there to find a solution themselves.
No one was injured by the debris that fell from the 70-year-old building.
A representative of the building residents, Khum Raksmey, told The Post they were very concerned for their safety and afraid the building might collapse.
“We are more worried than the leaders think, but because our homes are still there, we do not know where else to go. The rain made some bricks of the wall and ceiling fall off,” Raksmey said.
He said the building has more than 100 rooms and 65 families, most of whom have been living there since 1990, and some since 1980. But the building is very dirty, smelly, has shared bathrooms and is difficult to live in.
“Most of them want to move out of there, but only under appropriate conditions and for a fair price. We want money so we can buy a new house after we move out. We don’t want too much,” Raksmey said.
He said the people themselves cannot find a good solution and they are relying on the authorities to find one.
Another resident, Huos Sokunthea, has lived there for nearly 30 years, and said his family is very concerned for their safety, especially when it rains.
“I need a solution as soon as possible ... somewhere for us to live, work and do business,” Sokunthea said.
Another 65-year-old man, Chey Chea, who said he had lived in the building since 1990 told The Post that if there was any compromise, he would like to have a reasonable amount of money to buy land to build a house.
“If there was an arrangement to go somewhere else, I would not agree, I’m asking for a reasonable amount of money. Once we have money, we can move out of the city or stay close to it. That would be easier than arranging a place to move in,” Chea said.
Phnom Penh Municipal Hall spokesman Met Meas Pheakdey told The Post on Wednesday that the municipal administration has no plans to facilitate anything for the residents.
“The main thing now is that there are two points. The first is to provide information about the condition of the dilapidated building. People should not stay there any longer. Second, we prioritise those who give ideas or choose a solution that they can agree on together. Then we can solve the matter,” he said.
Late last month, Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng invited nearly 100 people living in the building to a meeting to find a suitable solution.
“The Phnom Penh administration does not want to keep people living in this location where they face high risk every day," Sreng said.