Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Villagers make plea over crocs

Villagers make plea over crocs

Alex Gonzalez-Davidson of NGO Mother Nature Cambodia talks to the media before entering Flora & Fauna International’s offices in Phnom Penh
Alex Gonzalez-Davidson of NGO Mother Nature Cambodia talks to the media before entering Flora & Fauna International’s offices in Phnom Penh. Vireak Mai

Villagers make plea over crocs

A group of villagers from Koh Kong’s Areng Valley gathered outside the offices of Flora & Fauna International (FFI) in Phnom Penh yesterday, demanding a say in a project designed to relocate endangered Siamese crocodiles from the site of the planned Stung Cheay Areng dam.

“We want to be included in this project. If these crocodiles are moved elsewhere this will hurt our community,” Ren Chanrith, a representative of the Cambodian Youth Network, said.

Since FFI’s announcement of the relocation program in February last year, villagers say at least one crocodile has been found dead and two letters to FFI raising concern over the crocodiles – which villagers consider “holy guardians” – have gone unanswered.

Alex Gonzalez-Davidson of NGO Mother Nature Cambodia said FFI’s crocodile relocation program was a “scam” because it was being sold as a project backed by the community.

“Today we’re here to deliver our questions in person,” he said, adding that if the villagers’ questions went unanswered the next step would involve a social media campaign.

But according to FFI country director Tuy Serey Vathana, only one of the roughly 30 to 40 remaining reptiles has been relocated from Areng River to a location 70 kilometres away.

“We’re willing to provide all and any answers to the community this week. The project has been halted until rainy season begins and our new project manager arrives in May,” he said.


  • US to ramp up sanctions after ‘flawed’ national polls

    At a press conference on Wednesday, the US State Department announced that it would expand visa sanctions on the Cambodian officials and individuals it deems responsible for “undermining democracy” in Cambodia. At the briefing, spokesperson Heather Nauert reiterated that the department regarded the July 29 elections

  • Final poll results confirm first single-party Assembly

    IN an unprecedented situation in Cambodian politics, the official results of the July 29 national elections have declared that the Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) will take all 125 seats in the National Assembly on the back of it receiving 76 per cent of the votes. The National

  • Chinese influence to sweep Kingdom?

    Growing Cambodia-China ties have seen the latter’s influence sweep across the Kingdom through increased investments and tourism. The Asian giant has become the leading source of foreign funds in Cambodia, fuelling the construction sector with huge casino and hotel projects. Much of the growth

  • PM's Bodyguard commander hits back at US

    The commander of Prime Minister Hun Sen’s Bodyguard Unit (BGU) Hing Bun Heang on Sunday dismissed a short video clip that went viral on social media in which he says he is preparing for a war with the United States over its aggressiveness towards