AROUND one hundred angry protesters paraded through Phnom Penh on September 24
demanding the Government reduce the price of petroleum, electricity and
The protesters - mainly motorcycle taxi drivers and garment
workers - marched to Independence Monument carrying banners accusing the
Government of corruption and ignoring the wishes of the electorate.
protesters wanted petrol prices to be reduced from 2,300 riel ($0.56) a liter
down to 1,500 riel ($0.38).
"The poor like us face increased difficulties
in our living condition when the price of gasoline keeps increasing," said
37-year-old motorcycle taxi driver Yord Yorn.
"We need the Government to
Yorn said the Government was corrupt from the lowest to the
highest levels. He said high-ranking officials were not affected by the price
hike because they never paid for gasoline - they just took it.
that this Government doesn't know how much the gasoline price is in this country
because they don't pay money for their transport," said Yorn.
politicians of visiting the poor when they needed their votes but ignoring them
once they were in power.
"We have protested three times already but they
have always ignored our demands."
Another protester, Rith Sovan, said
petrol in Cambodia was more expensive than in Thailand, yet the Government
always said the price was set by the international market, which he believed was
"If the Government follows international standards why does
Cambodia sell gasoline at a higher price than other countries?"
President of the Free Trade Union of the Workers of the Kingdom of Cambodia,
Chea Vichea, said another demonstration was planned for October 21-23, which
coincided with the anniversary of the Paris Peace Accords.