Prime Minister Hun Sen has warned of action against a number of senior government officials who leaked his April 14 audio message regarding his decision to place Phnom Penh and neighbouring Kandal provincial town Takmao in two-week lockdown to curb a sudden surge in Covid-19 transmission.

Hun Sen said the leak, which went viral on social media, had sent people into a frenzy, prompting them to stock up on food and other necessities in anticipation of the lockdown.

While acknowledging that the recorded voice was authentic, he explained that the message was incomplete and misled the public regarding his objective and the government's as a whole.

«I'm terribly sorry that my audio [lockdown] order was leaked by some irresponsible officials. It affected public sentiment ... We are well prepared, ensuring that people will not starve and still have access to running water and electricity.

"All basic services including rubbish collection will still be provided and residents can even do exercise [outside of their homes]," he said, adding those found leaking the audio message would be punished.