Minister of Interior Sar Kheng announced plans to build another Independence Monument in Battambang province – in addition to the iconic Independence Monument located in central Phnom Penh – to honour the historic achievement of national independence resulting from late King Father Norodom Sihanouk’s crusade to free the Kingdom from French colonial rule, which culminated in success on November 9, 1953.
Sar Kheng, who is also a lawmaker for Battambang, said at the inauguration ceremony of the Water Festival building along Stung Sangke River in Battambang on October 8 that this new monument in Battambang will be aesthetically pleasing and serve as a tourist attraction.
“Now the province is preparing to build an independence monument in front of the provincial hall, near the museum and the Fountain of Dragons, which will also serve as a rest and recreation area where people can meet up and socialise,” he said.
Battambang provincial governor Sok Lou told The Post on October 9 that the construction of a new monument to Cambodia’s independence in his province will officially break ground on over one hectare of land in November or December this year, and both the design and the location have already been settled on.
Lou said he could not recall the exact height that the monument would be constructed as he did not have data on hand.
He also noted that the exact budget for the construction has not been determined yet and the provincial administration will have to hold a meeting to discuss the project and that they would likely solicit donations from the private sector and the public to help fund it.
The provincial governor said that the monument would be to commemorate the achievements of King Father Norodom Sihanouk “who demanded independence from French colonialism, which was especially important for Battambang province, and he mobilised the masses to participate in the struggle for independence from France as well.”
According to Lou, the new monument would be a patriotic symbol for Battambang province that would also promote the beauty of the province and its history while attracting domestic and international tourists who will come to see it when visiting the province.
He added that, every year, the provincial administration celebrates National Independence Day on November 9, and they have never had a suitable place to hold their ceremonial functions. When the new monument is built it will make the perfect location for the National Independence Day commemoration.