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Families to get more land as compensation in dispute

Pech Sotheary / Khmer Times Share:
Deputy Governor Sok Sothy displays a map showing the land to villagers. Fresh News
Deputy Governor Sok Sothy displays a map showing the land to villagers. Fresh News

Koh Kong provincial authorities have prepared additional land plots in Kiri Sakor district’s Koh Sdech commune for 184 families who had a land dispute with the Union Development Group and were compensated with between half a hectare and two hectares in 2016.

Sok Sothy, provincial deputy governor, yesterday said that the 184 families had previously gathered at relevant ministries to request more land for cultivation.

He said that an inter-ministerial committee headed by the Environment Minister agreed to provide an additional one hectare of land to each of them.

“On Tuesday, our working team went to measure the land plots for them,” he said. “We will hold a ballot for the residents to pick their plots so that the process is transparent.”

Mr Sothy said that the government and provincial authorities will allocate the plots from 360 hectares of land in Prey Smach village and the remaining land will be cleared to build roads, schools and other public infrastructure.

Chey Mom, a representative for the families, yesterday said they were happy to accept the offer and praised the authorities’ efforts to build the roads, sewage system and other infrastructure. She said the families also hoped that they will be issued with land titles soon.

“I agree with the land distribution in this area, but I would like to ask the authorities and the company to clear and build good roads and install sewage pipes,” she said. “I also hope that we will be given the land titles soon.”

According to the families, they previously received 50-by-100 meters of residential land and between half a hectare and two hectares of farmland as compensation, which was not enough for them to sustain their livelihoods.

Meanwhile, another 77 families said that they also have a land dispute with the company and asked the government and provincial authorities to speed up resolution.

Sang Puy, a representative of the families, yesterday said that they have already waited several months for a solution.

“We have not yet received any compensation, and the authorities said they would resolve the dispute but have been quiet so far,” he said. “The 184 families have already received compensation and the authorities are giving them more land but have not solved our problem.”

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