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Villagers call for state electricity

Villagers call for state electricity

About 200 protesters clamoured yesterday in front of a Kandal province commune chief’s office, demanding the state take control of providing their electricity.

Yong Phany, a 32-year-old protester from Ang Snuol district’s Poeuk commune said Peoun Sambat, the private company contracted to provide electricity to the region about 10 years ago, charges far more than state prices.

Community members previously sent a petition to Prime Minister Hun Sen asking the state to take over as their electricity provider, but the petition never reached the premier, Phany said.

Pet La, 59, who also lives in the community, said they pay about 1,000 riel ($0.25) per kilowatt of electricity. The price should be cut in half, he said.

“The electricity’s company is more difficult than the state because they can do anything without understand the resident’s concerns,” La said.

Peoun Sambat’s owner could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Poeuk Commune Chief Penh Phal appealed residents to stop protesting, because the company has two years left in its contract, which ties the government’s hands.

“In two years next the contract will expire,” Phal said. “The state will be able to manage the electricity then.”

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