Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Land director removed after probe

Land director removed after probe

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The director of the Banteay Meanchey provincial Department of Land Management, Urban Planning, Construction and Cadastre, Prak Poly. Supplied

Land director removed after probe

The director of the Banteay Meanchey provincial Department of Land Management, Urban Planning, Construction and Cadastre, Prak Poly, will be removed from his position on Tuesday as a result of a probe into alleged corruption which has been concluded.

A letter signed by Seng Lot, the director-general of the General Department of Administration at the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction, on Friday said that Chhan Saphan, standby secretary of state, will take charge of Poly’s transfer.

“The ministry has assigned Chhan Saphan to preside over the transfer, accompanied by Seng Lot, Seng Sovanroatana, the deputy director-general of the General Department of Administration and Kosal Sopinak, the director of the Personnel Department,” the letter read.

The transfer comes after Minister of Land Management Chea Sophara created a working group to investigate Poly on July 30.

Sophara and Lot could not be reached by The Post on Monday for comment.

However, Sophara, who is also deputy prime minister, earlier told the media that Ang Narith, the deputy director of the Design Study Department at the Ministry of Land Management, will replace Poly on Tuesday.

“The transfer is part of the normal process to improve public services in accordance with government policy and to ensure construction safety and quality urban planning for citizens,” Sophara said.

The working group to investigate Poly was made up of nine officials.

Sar Sovann, secretary of state at the Ministry of Land Management, was appointed chair, with Pen Chansok Khemara, the general inspector at the ministry’s General Inspectorate, deputy chair.

The group was to “inspect work related to land registration and construction, personnel management and the provision of public services. It was also to monitor the implementation of land registration. It will file a report with the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction,” Sophara’s letter of July 30 said.

Som Chankea, the provincial coordinator at rights group Adhoc, said the transfer of Poly likely came as a result of the Ministry of Land Management investigation. It may have found irregularities regarding the issuing of land registration documents that led to repeated protests, he said.

“We have seen that Poly issued titles despite the land concerned being involved in a dispute. This led to further protests. He issued documents to those with money and power, while the villagers who occupied the land did not receive any,” Chankea said.

Accusations of corruption, nepotism and the irregular issuing of land titles had been levelled against Poly.

In one case, the government ordered that five families in Banteay Meanchey province be given plots of land. When this failed to happen, Sophara launched the investigation.

Local media reported Poly as saying that he had not ignored the government sub-decree. He said the land had not been demarcated because the families had chosen an area different from that mentioned in the sub-decree.


  • School reopening to be postponed until November

    Minister of Education Hang Chuon Naron on Tuesday wrote to Prime Minister Hun Sen requesting a delay of school reopening across the Kingdom until November, when the new academic year begins. In his letter, Chuon Naron said the postponement is warranted to avoid the new

  • Foreigners in Kingdom must now register in FPCS system

    The Ministry of Interior’s General Department of Immigration (GDI) announced that it would not grant visa extensions to foreigners staying in Cambodia if their names are not listed on the Foreigners Present in Cambodia System (FPCS) by July 1. Foreign nationals can register in the

  • Covid-19 at ‘alarming rate’, health ministry says

    The Covid-19 risk level for individual transmission is at an “alarming rate” in the Kingdom and its probability is “not low”, warned Health Ministry spokesperson Or Vandine. “Cambodia’s coronavirus scenario is classified as being at an early stage of the pandemic because of ongoing

  • Mandatory quarantine for 30,000 workers begins

    Some of the roughly 30,000 workers from factories and enterprises across the Kingdom who went on leave during Khmer New Year began their government-imposed 14-day quarantine on Monday. Speaking at a press conference while visiting workers at the Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone on Monday, Ministry

  • Unemployed to get $40 per month

    The Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training has instructed enterprises, business owners and travel agencies in five provinces to prepare the proper forms for the suspension of employment contracts. This, it said, will make it easier for the ministry to transfer $40 a month to workers

  • Gov’t travel ban flouted

    While the majority of Cambodians have paid heed to Prime Minister Hun Sen’s order to stay put and not travel during the Khmer New Year – the holidays of which were also postponed – several hundred have left Phnom Penh nonetheless. They have allegedly breached provincial

  • G20 energy ministers struggle to finalise oil output cuts

    Top oil producers struggled to finalise production cuts during a virtual summit held by Group of 20 (G20) energy ministers on Friday, despite US President Donald Trump’s mediation efforts to end a standoff with Mexico. The final G20 communique appeared to gloss over simmering divisions

  • Kingdom revises travel restriction order

    The government on Friday eased the district and provincial border restrictions issued on Thursday. People are now allowed to cross districts within their provinces. Phnom Penh and Kandal province are to be treated as a single region where people are allowed to travel freely. In

  • Private schools struggling

    The Cambodian Higher Education Association has claimed that 113 private educational establishments are facing bankruptcy because of their inability to pay rent and staff salaries in light of nationwide school closures caused by the Covid-19 outbreak. It said the financial trouble started when the Ministry of

  • Khmer New Year holidays postponed

    In an effort to halt Covid-19 infections in the Kingdom, Prime Minister Hun Sen has postponed the Khmer New Year holidays scheduled from April 13 to 16. While the people will not have their usual break, nor will there be any public celebrations or gatherings at pagodas,