Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Koh Kong authorities issue warning over land grabbing

Koh Kong authorities issue warning over land grabbing

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Over 9,000ha located in Kiri Sakor and Botum Sakor districts has been reserved for low-income citizens and those displaced by a project undertaken by Union Development Group. Photo supplied

Koh Kong authorities issue warning over land grabbing

The Koh Kong provincial administration has warned that it will take legal action against anyone who attempts to grab land in an area that used to belong to the Botum Sakor National Park.

The 9,306ha located in Kiri Sakor and Botum Sakor districts has been reserved for low-income citizens and those displaced by a project undertaken by Union Development Group Co Ltd as per royal decree 0716, the provincial administration said in a letter issued this month.

“Some residents have tried to enter the land to clear it, with the intention of appropriating it or selling it illegally.

“The provincial administration will take legal action against any resident who continues to clear the land illegally. Please stop such activities and leave the land immediately,” the Koh Kong provincial administration said.

Its spokesman Sok Sothy said on Monday that some people falsely claim to have been displaced from areas around Botum Sakor National Park and are demanding compensation.

“We have already offered compensation to all displaced residents in the area. No one from this area is protesting anymore.

“The ones that are demanding compensation now come from other areas. They don’t have any identity documents and they don’t listen to reason,” he said.

Saing Puy, who represents more than 180 families involved in a land dispute in Kiri Sakor district’s Koh Sdech commune, said her group lived in the area since 1999 until their houses were bulldozed to make way for a new investment project.

She said the authorities are falsely claiming that they were new to the area and were occupying the land illegally, and thus were refusing to pay compensation.

“The local government says we came from outside this area. This is not true. We have been here since 1999,” she said.

While the authorities have compensated around 1,000 families involved in land disputes in the area, 200 families have yet to see any indemnification, she said. They will protest until justice is done, she added.

In a separate case, Khim Finan, the governor of Siem Reap province’s Banteay Srei district, has vowed to stop illegal land grabbing and related activities in mangrove forests in Tbeng commune’s Skun village.

Khim Finan could not be reached for comment on Monday.

However, he said in a Facebook post that he will not allow illegal bulldozing and logging in the area.

“If you think you can break the law and get away with it, you are wrong. Residents of Banteay Srei district will not allow criminal activity in the area.

“I encourage residents to continue to report illegal activities in the district to protect the common interest,” the post said.

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Education’ a priority traffic-law penalty

    A top National Police official on June 21 neither rejected nor confirmed the authenticity of a leaked audio message, which has gone viral on social media, on a waiver of fines for a number of road traffic-related offences. General Him Yan, deputy National Police chief in

  • Volunteer scheme to foster ‘virtuous’ humanitarian spirit

    A senior education official said volunteer work contributes to solidarity and promotes a virtuous humanitarian spirit among the youth and communities. Serei Chumneas, undersecretary of state at the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, made the comment during the opening of a training programme called “

  • Chinese firms unveil preliminary results on metro, monorail for capital

    Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol and representatives from China Road and Bridge Corp (CRBC) and its parent company, the state-owned China Communications Construction Co Ltd (CCCC), met on June 24 for talks on results of the firms’ preliminary study on a potential metro

  • ACLEDA, WU to enable global money transfers

    Cambodia's largest commercial bank by total assets ACLEDA Bank Plc and global money transfer firm Western Union (WU) have partnered to offer customers cross-border money transfers to 200 countries via “ACLEDA mobile” app. In Channy, president and group managing director of ACLEDA, said the June 22 agreement

  • Aeon, Micromax partner again for third mall

    AEON Mall (Cambodia) Co Ltd and a locally-owned Micromax Co Ltd have entered into a partnership agreement to develop fibre optic infrastructure for $200 million Aeon Mall 3, which is expected to be opened in 2023. The agreement was signed on June 20 between Masayuki Tsuboya, managing director of

  • Walmart plans to diversify stock of Cambodia goods

    Walmart Inc, the world’s biggest retailer, on June 22 reiterated recent plans to scale up and greatly diversify its purchases of Cambodian products, according to the labour ministry. This came during a virtual working meeting between Minister of Labour and Vocational Training Ith Samheng and