Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Probe ordered into policewomen’s sexual harassment allegations



Probe ordered into policewomen’s sexual harassment allegations

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Four policewomen accuse Kampong Thom provincial police chief Ouk Kosal of engaging in misconduct since 2018, but they dared not protest as they were threatened. Police

Probe ordered into policewomen’s sexual harassment allegations

Interior Minister Sar Kheng has ordered a probe into sexual harassment allegations filed by four policewomen from the Kampong Thom police force. He is also a deputy prime minister.

The women accused Kampong Thom provincial police chief Ouk Kosal of harassing them.

Commissioner-General of the National Police Neth Savoeun has been ordered to urgently investigate the matter. Ministry secretary of state Chan Aan and Kampong Thom provincial governor Sok Lou are also looking into the matter.

“I cannot decide about this case yet as we have to wait for experts to look into it first,” Sar Kheng said on Tuesday.

It’s not the first time Kosal’s actions have put him on Sar Kheng’s radar.

Sar Kheng issued warning letters in March to the police chief regarding how he was careless in leading and managing his forces. He threatened to remove him from his position.

A letter with the four fingerprints of the female police officers was sent to Sar Kheng and released on July 30. It said Kosal engaged in misconduct since 2018, but they dared not protest as they were threatened. They also feared it would affect their family lives.

“We have complained about him in the past, but we did not get justice. We have no other way besides requesting help from Deputy Prime Minister Sar Kheng. [Kosal] committed the acts. He is the boss and we are weak,” the officers wrote.

Kampong Thom provincial governor Sok Lou told The Post that experts from the Ministry of Interior and the National Police Commissioner-General’s office are working on the case.

“Please let experts work first. I cannot make assumptions before an investigation,” said Lou.

Cambodian Centre for Human Rights (CCHR) executive director Chak Sopheap said to tackle the issue of harassment against women, all offenders have to be punished according to the law regardless of position.

Removing the culture of impunity will ensure ethical values, dignity and order in society, she said.

“It is not about restricting women’s clothes but addressing the root causes of sexual harassment. I hope all who claim to support women’s dignity will take part in providing justice to them,” she said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Without shoes or a helmet, a young cyclist steals the show

    Pech Theara gripped the curved handlebars of his rusty old bike, planted his bare feet on its pedals and stormed as fast as he could towards the finish line. The odds were against him as the 13-year-old faced off against kids with nicer bikes at

  • Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville expressway on schedule

    The construction of the more than $1.9 billion Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville Expressway has not been delayed despite the Covid-19 pandemic, with more than 26 per cent of the project completed and expected to finish in about two years, according to Ministry of Public Works and Transport secretary of

  • Over 110 garment factories close

    A government official said on November 22 that at least 110 garment factories had closed in the first nine months of the year and left more than 55,000 workers without jobs – but union leaders worry those numbers could be much higher. Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training undersecretary

  • Singapore group seeks $14M in damages from PPSP over ‘breach of contract’

    Singapore-based Asiatic Group (Holdings) Ltd is seeking a minimum of $14.4 million relief from Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX)-listed Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone Plc (PPSP) for allegedly breaching a power plant joint venture (JV) agreement. Asiatic Group’s wholly-owned Colben System Pte Ltd and 95 per

  • PM vows to protect Hun family

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has vowed to continue his fight against opposition politicians who he said intend to smash the Hun family. Without naming the politicians but apparently referring to former leaders of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), Hun Sen said there

  • Cambodia lauded for fight against Covid-19

    Cambodia has drawn global accolades for its handling of the Covid-19 pandemic, with a new report finding that the Kingdom has controlled the pandemic better than any other country in Asia. Dr Takeshi Kasai, director of the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) Western Pacific region,