Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Loudspeakers latest in arsenal to fight forest crimes

Loudspeakers latest in arsenal to fight forest crimes

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The Mondulkiri provincial Department of Environment has installed loudspeakers on tuk-tuks to spread the advantage and significance of conserving and preserving natural resources. Photo supplied

Loudspeakers latest in arsenal to fight forest crimes

The Mondulkiri provincial Department of Environment has installed loudspeakers on tuk-tuks and motorbikes to be driven around villages prone to natural resource crimes to educate citizens on the importance of protecting forests.

Provincial Department of Environment director Keo Sopheak said on Monday that the loudspeakers would spread messages encouraging villagers to take part in protecting natural resources rather than plundering them.

“We installed the loudspeakers on motorcycles, vans and tuk-tuks to spread the advantage and significance of conserving and preserving natural resources and disseminating the law on natural resource protection for citizens in villages, communes and districts around protected areas.

“We have also disseminated letters citing some articles relating to penalties for natural resource destruction such as forest land clearing, wildlife hunting and logging. We hope citizens will learn from these,” he said.

He said the loudspeakers would also be driven around Kouprey Roundabout in Sen Monorom town, the heart of the province.

The campaign aims to encourage everyone to take part in the protection and conservation of wild animals and biodiversity.

Sopheak said the Department of Environment would regularly spread information, especially over the weekends.

The department, in collaboration with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), will also educate students at schools near protected areas, he said.

The campaign, Sopheak said, is necessary because despite educating villagers in the past, some remain ignorant and continue to carry out forest crimes.

“Because they still rely on natural resources for their livelihoods, they have yet to fully change to make a living another way.

“Citizens still enter some areas where there is a demand for land to clear conservation forests. But we stop them and take some legal measures,” he said.

Mondulkiri provincial forest activist Kroeung Tola said he supports the campaign and has requested that natural resource offenders face the law if they do not correct their ways.

“This dissemination helps increase the knowledge of citizens. But authorities must also apply the law after this dissemination,” he said.

Ministry of Environment spokesman Neth Pheaktra said Cambodia has the highest level of forests in Southeast Asia with some 50 per cent of the country covered.

The government has so far increased the natural protected area managed by the Ministry of Environment.

This increase accounts for 41 per cent of land in the country, which is equivalent to about 7.2 million hectares. There are 56 natural protected areas along with three biodiversity conservation corridors.

“Forest rangers and the relevant authorities have tried to protect and conserve natural protected areas, but some nefarious people have secretly cleared and occupied state forest land illegally.

“The Ministry of Environment took legal action against offenders and built many case files to be forwarded to courts in Preah Sihanouk, Preah Vihear, Kampong Thom, Battambang, Pursat and Kampong Speu provinces,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • 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,

  • No word on state of emergency

    The National Assembly (NA) said it will postpone all unnecessary meetings in line with guidance from the Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO) amid the Covid-19 pandemic. However, it did not say when or how it will debate the “state of emergency”

  • NA, Senate set for bill on ‘emergency’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has requested the Senate to convene an extraordinary meeting to review the draft law that aims to put the Kingdom in a state of emergency after the bill reached the National Assembly (NA) on Friday. The draft law, which was approved

  • Tourists can now prolong their stay

    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation said tourists holding Visa T and arriving in the Kingdom after January 1 will be allowed to prolong their stay until they are able to return home. The decision comes as Cambodia and most countries take measures to

  • Temporarily laid-off workers to get just $70

    Prime Minister Hun Sen announced changes in the allowances for temporarily laid-off garment workers from receiving 60 per cent of the minimum wage to a flat $70 because factories cannot pay, he said. Workers will also not be required to attend training courses after more than 100 factories

  • Hun Sen, ministers, officials donate salaries in virus fight

    Prime Minister Hun Sen and other senior government officials have decided to donate their salaries to the National Committee for Combating Covid-19 in support of the ongoing battle against the coronavirus. Hun Sen announced in an April 1 letter that because the Covid-19 situation in Cambodia