Prime Minister Hun Sen on March 15 instructed the governors of Phnom Penh and some provinces who have not announced a ban on gatherings including weddings to consider doing so.
In an audio message, he said the matter must be taken seriously and Covid-19 preventive measures must be introduced.
“[I] beg our people for their understanding. Now, there is only one [Covid-19] case in Takeo province [but] many places have already been closed as they may pose high risks,” he said.
The prime minister stressed that he had already given the green light; what remains now is the governor’s execution.
“[Authorities] must examine places where [preventive] measures have not been taken thoroughly. Please pay greater attention. [Recently] a Phnom Penh resident attended a wedding in [Takeo] province and tested positive for Covid-19.
“This has shocked almost half the country. Therefore, weddings should be suspended and temporarily replaced with prayers [to their ancestors],” he said.
Hun Sen’s appeal came after Kakada Sophorn, a monk-turned-social media celebrity, participated in a wedding as a best man in Takeo on March 12 and later tested positive.
Takeo provincial authorities on March 15 cordoned off the entire Kraing Leav village in Samrong district’s Rovieng commune where the wedding took place. So far around 25 people are found to have come into direct contact with the former monk at the wedding, while 355 others had indirect contact with him.
Kampong Speu provincial authorities have also suspended gatherings at five locations where participants had come into contact with Sophorn’s friends.