Legendary TV sports promoter and commentator Ma Serey has died, with Prime Minister Hun Sen speaking of “losing a friend”.
Serey, sports director at the Cambodian Broadcast Service, which runs CTN, CNC and MyTV channels, succumbed to liver cancer at the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital on Wednesday morning. He was 56.
He is survived by wife Sok Sokhom and three sons and two daughters.
Born to farming parents in Svay Rieng province, Serey learned French and Thai at a refugee camp on the Cambodian-Thai border during the later years of the Khmer Rouge.
He started working for the UN Transitional Authority in Cambodia in 1993, beginning his career in Cambodian media as a French and Thai translator and football commentator at TV5 before joining CBS in 1996.
Always looking to pass on his skills and experience, he was affectionately known as “Teacher” by colleagues.
Hun Sen posted on his Facebook page: “I am very sad today because I lost a friend who passed away in the morning. Besides giving my condolences, I don’t have any words, only to say goodbye with tears.”