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Funding next step for Chea Vichea statue

Funding next step for Chea Vichea statue

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Chea Mony, president of Cambodia’s Free Trade Union, speaks to the Post on Tuesday in Phnom Penh.

Phnom Penh Municipal governor Kep Chuktema will be responsible for at least some of the funds to build the statue of slain union leader Chea Vichea, according to Free Trade Union president Chea Mony.

On Tuesday, Chea Mony announced that Prime Minister Hun Sen had agreed to a six-year-old request for a statue to be built in honour of his older brother Chea Vichea, who was assassinated in 2004 near a news kiosk at Wat Langka in Phnom Penh.

“The meaning of Prime Minister Hun Sen’s approval is that he wants Kep Chuktema to assist with the payment for the construction of the Chea Vichea statue,” Chea Mony said.

On the same day Chea Mony submitted the request to Hun Sen, the premier approved it with the words: “Agree as requested. Please Excellency Kep Chuktema help prepare construction by discussing with Mr Chea Mony.”

The meaning of this sentence, Chea Mony told the Post yesterday, was that city hall would have to help pay the money for the construction as well as granting the place for the construction.

“I think that Excellency municipal governor [Kep Chuktem] would aid as per his Excellency’s will,” Chea Mony told the Post.

Chea Mony added that he is looking forward to meeting with Kep Chuktema to discuss plans for what he intends to be a full body statesman-style statue of his brother, adding he would agree to nothing less.

When contacted yesterday, Kep Chuktema did not comment in detail, but said that he has not decided anything yet about preparations or how to help Chea Mony with construction of the statue as he had not yet received any official letter from Hun Sen.

“I affirm that I cannot do anything because I have not received [any instructions],” he said.

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