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Sihanouk gov to retire

Sihanouk gov to retire

The provincial governor of Preah Sihanouk is set to retire from his post at the end of this month, bringing yet another leadership change to the seaside province.

Chhit Sokhon, promoted to the position in May last year, will step down after his 60th birthday at the end of August, Ministry of Interior Secretary of State Sak Setha said yesterday.

“Chhit Sokhon is going to retire at the end of this month [August], because he reaches 60 years old, the age that public civil servants get retirement,” Setha said.

Setha said no replacement had been found, despite rumours Koh Kong Military Commander Brigadier General Yun Min could step into the role.

The announcement follows news last week that Sihanoukville Municipal Governor Chin Sarin was being transferred back to the Ministry of Interior amid criticism of his performance by Interior Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Sar Kheng.

It also comes three months after provincial police chief Seang Kosal was replaced by Phnom Penh municipal police deputy chief Choun Narin, amid a spate of beatings, stabbings and shootings.

However, last week, residents from 17 communities in the province threw their support behind Sokhon, urging him to continue until 2018.

Representative of rights group Licadho Khun Savoeun said residents involved in local land disputes had been impressed by Sokhon’s diplomacy and accessibility.

“He has used a soft strategy to talk with people, even if his solution is not really good,” he said.

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