Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - TV portrayal riles villagers




TV portrayal riles villagers

TV portrayal riles villagers

111014_02
Former residents of the Boeung Kak lake area gather for a protest at ‘Freedom Park’ yesterday in Phnom Penh. The protesters allege that TVK was biased against them in its coverage of their struggle.

Former Boeung Kak lakeside residents who accepted compensation after facing forced eviction criticised a recent television portrayal of their living situation and requested additional government funds, during a peaceful protest at Freedom Park yesterday.

Villagers from the Borei Santepheap II building in the capital’s Chaom Chao district accepted an offer of US$8,000 and two million riel per household to relocate from the lakeside in January, before the government decided in August to grant 12.44 hectares for on-site relocation to residents who had rejected previous compensation offers.

The villagers spoke out against an October 5 National TV broadcast, which they claimed had incorrectly depicted the villagers’ living situation in a positive light by showing several Borei Santepheap II villagers saying that they had decent jobs and a good standard of living. However, the protestors claimed that they were struggling to find jobs and did not have enough money.

Village representative Sam Vanna claimed that the residents highlighted in the television program were lying.

“We are living in a difficult situation, but Prak Sarin, former villager in village 2, and Doung Marin, former villager in village 4, said that they are living in good conditions,” she said.

Sam Vanna requested that the government provide the Borei Santepheap II residents with an additional US$20,000 so that they could buy homes.

“We would like to ask for more money because our land titles are pawns in the bank now,” she said.

In a meeting with villagers earlier this week, Daun Penh district deputy governor Sok Penhvuth allowed the ensuing Freedom Park protest, but said that he had “no right to decide on the villagers’ request” for funds. However, he reportedly promised to relay their demands to the municipal governor.

Deputy municipal governor Pa Socheat could not be reached by the Post for comment yesterday.

In 2007, Phnom Penh Municipality granted a 99-year lease to local developer Shukaku Inc, run by ruling party senator Lao Meng Khin, to develop land around Boeung Kak lake. Rights groups estimated that more than 20,000 people would face ultimately face relocation as a result of the development.

MOST VIEWED

  • Thousands attend CNRP-organised pro-democracy vigil in South Korea

    Thousands of supporters of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) on Saturday gathered in the South Korean city of Gwangju to hold a candlelight demonstration calling for the “liberation” of democracy in Cambodia. Yim Sinorn, a CNRP member in South Korea, said on

  • Cambodia-Thailand rail reconnected after 45 years

    A railway reconnecting Cambodia and Thailand was officially inaugurated on Monday following a 45-year hiatus, with the two kingdoms’ prime ministers in attendance at the ceremony. On the occasion, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen and Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha travelled together from Thailand’s

  • US Embassy: Chinese trade does not help like the West’s

    The US Embassy in Phnom Penh on Friday said relations between China and Cambodia did not create jobs or help industry when compared to the trade between the Kingdom and the US. “About 87 per cent of trade [with China] are Chinese imports, which do not

  • Vietnamese land-grabbers held

    Following a provincial court order, Ratanakkiri Military Police on April 16 arrested 12 Vietnamese nationals accused of crossing the border into Cambodia and illegally clearing forest land. The accused are now being detained at Phnom Svay prison in the province. Ratanakkiri military police commander Thav Yen told