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PM orders restoration of S’ville beach

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A landfill dumped into the beach had yet to excavate. Photo CNRO

PM orders restoration of S’ville beach

Prime Minister Hun Sen has ordered Minister of Land Management Chea Sophara to personally inspect claims of landfilling at Praek Treng beach.

He also ordered a private company to dredge the beach and restore it to its previous condition.

The order, issued on September 18, was made after a deluge of social media criticisms that the beach is public property and that landfilling turns its clear waters muddy.

“Following the order of Prime Minister Hun Sen on September 18, 2018, H.E. Chea Sophara, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Land Management, will inspect the landfilling at Praek Treng beach in village 4, O’tres commune, Steung Hav district, Preah Sihanouk province and order to dredge the land out of the sea and maintain the natural beach in the original stage,” said a September 19 Ministry of Land Management announcement.

Director of the Cambodian National Research Organisation (CNRO) Sok Sokhom told The Post on Wednesday that Sophara observed the restoration after a week-long inspection of Praek Treng beach.

“After the Minister of Land Management went there for a week – and I also observed – I have not seen any dredging activity yet, and there is a fence completely surrounding the land,” he said.

Sokhom expressed disappointment that none of the measures has been taken yet.

Preah Sihanouk provincial spokesman Or Saroeun told The Post that the provincial hall has taken action in the matter.

“Honestly, the land has not been dredged out of the sea completely as yet. But, we have not finished the procedures,” he said.

Ministry of Land Management spokesman Seng Lot declined to comment on the matter due to insufficient information from the site.

Ministry of Environment spokesman Neth Pheaktra said the ministry will not comment on the matter and to reserve the case for the National Committee on Coastal Area Management and Development to take further steps.

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