PM orders governor to resolve Boeung Kak dispute

Source: Khmer Times

Protesting villagers. KT/Chor Sokunthea

Prime Minister Hun Sen yesterday ordered the Phnom Penh governor to speed up the process of ending Boeung Kak Lake land dispute, which has dragged on for nearly a decade and has seven families still awaiting a resolution.

The order was made after representatives of Boeung Kak Lake submitted a petition requesting intervention from the Prime Minister.

Mr Hun Sen said that the government had already issued a sub-decree to cut the remaining land from the development to give to the people, so a resolution should have been reached with all remaining families.

Mr Hun Sen ordered  Governor Khuong Sreng to accept the petition and find a solution for the remaining seven families to resolve the problem and bring a halt to protests that have stretched over nearly eight years.

“With the remaining land, please solve the dispute quickly,” he said.

“Now I give it to the governor to settle the issue and I hope that this dispute will reach an end. There are seven families remaining only, so please resolve the issue through mutually understanding each other.”

Ly Chan Nary, part of the remaining families, expressed satisfaction and hope after the prime minister’s comments.

“We have been the affected since 2010 and the resolution in the past, it was not fair for us,” she said. “They provided us less than 10 percent of the land we own.”

City Hall spokesman Met Meas Pheakdey said the municipality would resolve the dispute as quickly as possible following orders from Mr Hun Sen.

“There are many procedures,” he said.

The Boeung Kak area covers 133 hectares in Srah Chak commune. In 2007, the government signed a 99-year lease at a throwaway price of $79 million for 133 hectares of Beoung Kak land, including the lake’s 90 hectares.

Since then, 4,000 families have been forcibly evicted or resettled. Currently, there are seven families that have not yet accepted compensation.

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