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UN human rights envoy follows up on corruption

Taing Vida / Khmer Times No Comments Share:
Rhona Smith meets with ACU officials yesterday. KT/Siv Channa

The United Nations’ Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Cambodia yesterday met Anti-Corruption Unit representatives to be updated on the Kingdom’s progress in its fight against corruption.

UN rights envoy Rhona Smith is in the Kingdom until Thursday to follow up on a number of issues, including human rights, rule of law and democracy.

Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Ms Smith said she was briefed on strategies and plans to combat corrupt practices in Cambodia through legal reforms, education and prevention.

“The government was explaining what they are doing to combat and fight corruption in Cambodia so they can realise that rectangular strategy, and also the sustainable development goals, have many mechanisms to receive information on corruption, and also to investigate and then report,” Ms Smith said.

ACU vice president Keang Seng said Ms Smith was updated on what the ACU has done to curb corruption.

“Ms Smith acknowledged that our work requires time and commitment […] in order to achieve sufficient results,” Mr Seng said. “We regularly report our efforts in combatting corruption in order to be evaluated. At this point, she asked us to work harder.”

Preap Kol, executive director of Transparency International Cambodia, said the ACU should speed up its fundamental and structural reforms in order to address corruption issues.

“Corruption remains a problem and a major concern that the government should take serious action to stop,” Mr Kol said, adding that the government must amend Anti- Corruption Laws, especially articles regulating asset declaration. “Current laws are in line with international standards, but a number of articles need to be amended.”

Cambodia last year ranked 161 out of 180 countries surveyed as part of TI’s annual Corruption Perception Index.

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