The Preah Sihanouk provincial administration on Monday requested that vendors who have stalls on Otres Beach cooperate and demolish them this week so that the provincial administration can beautify it.
Preah Sihanouk Provincial Hall spokesman Kheang Phearum said on Tuesday that in principle, the provincial administration had no solution for the residents because the coastal beach belonged to the State, and vendors had illegally conducted the business there.
“Working groups from the Preah Sihanouk provincial and Sihanoukville administrations will demolish the remaining stalls this week, after which the State will beautify the beach and institute order so that the public can visit it for recreational purposes,” he said.
He said the provincial administration believes that those who continue to conduct business on the beach will also cooperate to demolish their stalls.
“We are preparing to clean up the beach in the public interest and not because of any individual,” he stressed.
The Preah Sihanouk provincial administration on Monday issued a press release saying that on December 4 last year, it had informed vendors on Ochheuteal and Otres beaches in Commune IV to demolish their stalls, shelters and booths from the beach areas.
Upon issuing the notice, Ochheuteal Beach vendors had cooperated with the authorities and demolished 126 stalls without any protest or violence. They also participated in cleaning the beach to restore it to its original state.
In particular, some vendors on Otres Beach 1 and Otres Beach 2 cooperated to demolish their stalls. But some others had yet to do so.
“The Preah Sihanouk provincial administration requests that brothers and sisters who are continuing their sales on Otres Beach 1 and Otres Beach 2 demolish their stalls and shelters.
“In case brothers and sisters don’t follow this notice, the provincial administration will take administrative measures to demolish them.
“The administration will not be held accountable for any damage or the loss of property,” it said.
Ti Ien, a vendor who has a stall on Otres Beach, expressed regret that the provincial administration had adopted the stance. The administration, he said, had not offered compensation or provided any resolution for them even though they had been selling goods there for nearly 20 years.
“They have not even provided an opportunity for the vendors to meet and discuss with the provincial governor at all,” Ien claimed.