Monday, 5.5.2008: Mr. Hun Sen Said that Ly Yong Phat Has between US$300 Million to US$1 Billion

Posted on 6 May 2008. Filed under: Week 559 |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 559

[As some new readers may wonder why this article was selected: we mirror the realities of the press in Cambodia, trying to give a broad overview of the different voices in society – this article as an example of how the atmosphere is heating up towards the elections in July.]

Mr. Hun Sen Said that [Oknha] Ly Yong Phat [senator from the Cambodian People’s Party] Has between US$300 Million to US$1 Billion [but the following text doesn’t say anything about Mr. Ly Yong Phat]

“On Saturday 3 May 2008, at a foundation stone laying ceremony in Kompong Chhnang, Mr. Hun Sen, who is known to be strong, power addicted, and a man with an aluminum fist, insulted the Sam Rainsy Party by saying that some parties consider the rich to be their enemies.

“Indeed, when a Sam Rainsy government would rule the country after the coming elections on 27 July 2008, Mr. Sam Rainsy will implement 100 measures, especially first to take action against dishonest businesspeople and ‘rat oknhas’ [the title ‘oknha’ can be bestowed to a person who has donated at least US$100,000 to some charitable or socially relevant causes – here it is used in an intentionally derogatory way – an translation which conveys the negative feeling in this case may be something like ‘a rat baron’] who do business illegally such as illegal logging, drug trafficking, sex trafficking, running casinos illegally – particularly stealing and selling state property as they like, so that they become rich, including by the sale of high-priced big buildings belonging to the state, tens of thousands of hectares of land concessions, all kinds of minerals in the ground, and by the destruction of fish grounds, and the diversity of the habitat of wild animals. Those businesspeople collude with those who are at present powerful through corruption and dictatorship under the pretext of development.

“In such a situation [after the elections], a Sam Rainsy government will not spare the crimes of a handful of wicked people including dishonest businesspeople who steal from the nation, ‘rat oknhas’ who own tens of thousands of hectares of land concessions; some other oknhas not only take state land, they even grab from the citizens with the help of powerful officials and the courts, which are very corrupt to-the-bone. A government ruled by the Sam Rainsy Party will review all wrong contracts which affect the national and the citizens’ interests, and expropriate a number of illegal economic land concessions, which have been taken by collusion between powerful people and ‘rat oknhas,’ and give them to citizens. A Sam Rainsy government will not let dishonest businesspeople steal billions of dollars of state property like the current corrupt government, that defends such dishonest businesspeople. A Sam Rainsy government will protect national and international businesspeople and investors who do business legally, respect the labor law, and pay taxes appropriately to the state.

“In the arrogant speech of the man with an aluminum fist, Akkak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen, he said that during the nearly 30 years while the party ruled the country, there had never been much money in the national treasury like today (how could there have been money when the system was corrupt to the bone – whispering [probably added by they newspaper’s typesetter, a prank sometimes used in other countries]: – is this Hun Sen’s speech or the writer’s?); now there is an amount of Riel 1,000,000 kaut in the national treasury [the numeric unit kaut is defined differently in different reference sources: 1 kaut either representing the amount of 1,000,000,000 or of 1,000,000,000,000; these would roughly correspond to US$260 billion or US$26,000,000 billion]. Some officials told Samleng Sadeav that this sounds very ridiculous… it is shameful… if there is such a big amount of money, why not increase the salaries for civil servants, police, soldiers, workers, and teachers, in order that they can appropriately live in an honorable living standard, without having to seek for extra income… the prices of goods doubled, so why not double the salaries also?

“Regarding this case, Mr. Sam Rainsy told Samleng Sadeav, ‘If a government of the Sam Rainsy Party rules the country, Mr. Sam Rainsy will increase the salaries for civil servants, police, soldiers, workers, and teachers – at least to Riel 300,000 [approx. US$75] for workers, and at least Riel 500,000 [approx. US$125] for officials of all institutions, in line with the prices of goods on the market, and he guaranteed to decrease the price of fuel from Riel 5,000 [approx. US$1.25] to Riel 3,800 [approx. US$0.95].

“Mr. Hun Sen’s current government is incompetent to decrease the prices of goods on the market and to increase the salaries for officials of all levels, workers, and teachers; that is why our writer gave him a new name as the Dekchor Hun Sen [= the Strongman Hun Sen], the man [not with an iron, but] with an aluminum fist.

“One more thing that is very ridiculous is that Mr. Hun Sen boasted that nowadays our country is rich in wild animals. A source from a citizen, living in Tuek Thla commune, Russey Keo, Phnom Penh, Mr. Lim Socheat, said that the current government develops in all sectors – what a rubbish, how can it be rich in wild animals when all valuable trees have been cut and sold, and the minerals in the ground, gems and other minerals, have been totally destroyed, and in the water, there are not many fish left, like it was during the Sangkum Reastr Niyum time? Little development, conducted only in the densely populated areas deceive the eyes of the national and international community, and especially of the donor countries (on the land, there are now more mosquitoes, and in the water, there are more mosquito larvae). The citizens should be no longer deceived, they know well the tricks, and they will never be cheated again…” Samleng Sadeav, Vol.1, #6, 5-6.5.2008

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Monday, 6 May 2008

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1632, 4-5.5.2008

  • [Director of an institute of civic studies] Dr. Chhim Phal Vorun Reveals [former Cambodian Center for Human Rights president and now Human Rights Party president] Kem Sokha’s Corruption [allegation relating to finance reporting]


Khmer Amatak, Vol.9, #577, 5.5.2008

  • Number of Voters Declines because There Has Been No Progress [no motivation to vote – according to a report of the Committee for Free and Fair Elections]


Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.2, #147, 4-6.5.2008

  • Pong Chhiv Kek [Dr. Kek Galabru, director of the Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights]: Press Freedom in Cambodia Is Under Threat and Power of Cambodian People’s Party
  • Cambodian People’s Party Forces Students to Register as Its Members


Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6336, 5.5.2008

  • The Cambodian People’s Party Continues to Friendly Accept New Members without Discrimination with an Open Heart and Does Not Care Whether New or Old
  • An Authority [a deputy governor] of Mukh Kampul District Breaks Dam to Enclose 160 Hectares of Land of Refuge for Fish Laying Eggs [Kandal]
  • [Two] Children Looking after Cattle Found B-40 Rocket and Hit It; Both of Them Were Killed by the Explosion [30 April 2008 – Rotonak Mondol, Battambang]


Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3451, 5.5.2008

  • Sam Rainsy: A Government Led by the Sam Rainsy Party Will Confiscate National Property [which has been appropriated] from Wicked Companies for Citizens
  • [Sam Rainsy Party parliamentarian from Phnom Penh] Yim Sovann: Hun Sen’s Ways to Deal with Land Disputes Is Just Demagogy and Deceiving the People


Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4580, 4-5.5.2008

  • Supreme Court Orders Samdech Krom Preah to Present Defense Memoir over the Sale of Funcinpec Headquarters
  • Samdech [Hun Sen] Vice-President of Cambodian People’s Party Declares to Accept Officials from Sam Rainsy Party until the Election Day
  • Samdech Dekchor: ‘As Long as the Cambodian People’s Party Rules the Country, the Respect of Religious Beliefs Is Guaranteed’ [stated at the foundation stone laying ceremony of a pagoda in Kompong Chhnang on 3 May 2008; some countries adhere to a strict and discriminating policy on religions or promote one religion; Cambodia has a record of respecting Buddhism, Islam, and Christianity]
  • Cambodian Prime Minister Pushes the US-ASEAN Business Council to Check Potential of Investments in the Agricultural Field


Samleng Sadeav, Vol.1, #6, 5-6.5.2008

  • Mr. Hun Sen Said that Ly Yong Phat Has between US$300 Million to US$1 Billion

Have a look at last week’s editorial: UNESCO: A free press empowers the people to control their own lives

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