Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Religion minister takes questions at assembly



Religion minister takes questions at assembly

Minister of Cults and Religion Him Chhem speaks in the National Assembly yesterday in Phnom Penh.
Minister of Cults and Religion Him Chhem speaks in the National Assembly yesterday in Phnom Penh. Heng Chivoan

Religion minister takes questions at assembly

Lawmaker yesterday grilled Minister of Cults and Religions Him Chhem over plans to relocate the ministry’s headquarters and convert the old building into a school for monks.

Speaking to reporters after his questioning by the National Assembly’s commission on education, culture and religious affairs, Chhem described plans to move the ministry to the current Buddhist Institute site by 2018, saying construction on a new building to house ministry staff at the location began on December 28.

Cambodia National Rescue Party spokesman Yem Ponhearith, who chairs the commission, meanwhile said the minister told lawmakers that the current ministry building would become an education centre for student monks, plans with which the group agreed.

Chhem also responded to claims of a lack of discipline within the monkhood, including several cases of monks engaging in criminal behaviour, saying the clergy would convene monk assemblies to solve cases of wrongdoing, according to Ponhearith. Ponhearith also said Chhem testified that the ministry would “consider” taking further measures against people who insult the religion.

The CNRP spokesman also stressed that more needed to be done to improve the standard of Buddhist instruction at the university level. “The quality of education is still limited in comparison to other universities.”

He added that his commission also planned to summon ministers for culture and fine arts, education and tourism.

MOST VIEWED

  • Kingdom accepts Chinese vaccine, PM first to get jab

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said China would offer Cambodia an immediate donation of one million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine produced by the Sinopharm company. In an audio message addressing the public on the night of January 15, he said Cambodia has accepted the offer and

  • Reeling in Cambodia’s real estate sector

    A new norm sets the scene but risks continue to play out in the background A cold wind sweeps through the streets of Boeung Trabek on an early January morning as buyers and traders engage in commerce under bright blue skies. From a distance, the

  • Hun Sen: Lakes filled in for national developments

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has announced continued operations to fill some lakes in Phnom Penh to create land for developments, though he is against the unrelated practice of damming rivers or blocking waterways. Speaking at the inauguration of the Ministry of Public Works and Transport

  • Koh Preus upgrades 70% complete

    Initial construction of a nearly $30 million tourism infrastructure project on Preah Sihanouk province’s Koh Preus Island is “about 70 per cent complete”, according to an official with the developer. Heng Thou, construction site manager of Angela Real Estate Co Ltd (ARE), told The Post that

  • Local media loses a giant, and The Post a great friend

    Cheang Sokha, a gifted and streetwise reporter who rose to the highest ranks of Cambodian media and was beloved for his sharp intelligence, world-class humour and endless generosity, died on Friday in his hometown of Phnom Penh. He was 42. His wife, Sok Sophorn, said he

  • Cambodia, India agree to start direct flights, tourism exchanges

    Cambodia and India have agreed to start direct flight connections and promote closer tourism exchanges and cooperation in all areas after the Covid-19 saga comes to a close. The agreement was reached during a meeting between Cambodian Minister of Tourism Thong Khon and newly-minted Indian