Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Kampong Speu villagers protest eviction for plantation

Kampong Speu villagers protest eviction for plantation

Kampong Speu villagers protest eviction for plantation

MORE than 1,000 people in Kampong Speu province protested over the weekend amid fears they would be evicted to make room for a development by a sugar company owned by a Cambodian People’s Party senator, though local officials said families would not be affected by the company’s development plans.

The protest began on Saturday in front of the Omlaing commune offices in Kampong Speu’s Thpong district, and continued on Sunday before commune officials met with some of the commune residents to hear their concerns.

“Today, we are meeting with villagers to find a resolution, because Phnom Penh Sugar Company has the right to develop 9,000 hectares of this land, but we will not allow the company to take the villagers’ land,” said Omlaing commune chief Harb Dam.

Kampong Speu governor Kang Heang confirmed that Phnom Penh Sugar Company was owned by Ly Yong Phat, a CPP senator whose Angkor Sugar Company is at the centre of a land dispute in Oddar Meanchey province.

He said Phnom Penh Sugar Company had been awarded an economic land concession for the 9,000 hectares, but he could not confirm when the concession was granted.

Hi Hoeun, a 55-year-old protester, said many of the families had been living on their land since 1979. He noted that although the families had not received a formal eviction notice, they had grown concerned after 12 excavators and six bulldozers appeared on the disputed land last Thursday.

“We would like to ask the company to stop their 12 excavators and six bulldozers and wait for negotiations, because we want our rice and farmland, and we don’t want to get a compensation payment,” he said.

Ly Yong Phat could not be reached for comment on Sunday, and contact information for other Phnom Penh Sugar Company staff was not available.

MOST VIEWED

  • Government hits back at threats to pull EBA, suspend UN seat

    The spokesman for the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) has said the government is in no way concerned after the European Parliament gave it three months to reverse what it called the “systematic repression of the political opposition”. Ignoring the ultimatum could mean facing

  • EU parliament’s 13-point vote to decide on possible sanctions

    The European Parliament is due to vote on Thursday on a 13-point resolution on Cambodia – which includes a call for the treason charges against bailed opposition leader Kem Sokha to be dropped – a threat that could see the EU enforce a range of sanctions against

  • Chinese influx pushing locals, Westerners out of Preah Sihanouk

    Some within the Kingdom’s tourism industry have speculated that the recent influx of Chinese visitors may hinder domestic tourism as the price of accommodations in the coastal city of Sihanoukville continues to rise. Preah Sihanouk province, which has become a hotbed for Chinese investment

  • Sar Kheng: Sokha requested security

    Interior Minister Sar Kheng on Sunday revealed the story behind the transfer of former opposition party leader Kem Sokha from Trapaing Phlong prison in Tbong Khmum province to his house in the capital. Speaking at the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) headquarters in Prey