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Pheng Vannak fired from RCAF

Khy Sovuthy / Khmer Times No Comments Share:
Pheng Vannak. Facebook

The Defence Ministry has fired Facebook personality Pheng Vannak from the military, where he held the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

The move comes a month after he was removed from his position as a member of a CPP working group in Prey Veng province.

In June, Mr Vannak was sentenced to one year in prison for public defamation and incitement to commit crime, but the judge suspended the majority of the sentence. He left prison on June 17 after spending two months and 15 days behind bars.

A Defence Ministry’s statement, signed on Tuesday by Minister General Tea Banh, said the ministry had decided to remove Lt Col Vannak who was working in the RCAF General Command Headquarters’ staff office.

“It is because he defied the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces’ general statute and rules,” the statement said.

Mr Vannak could not be reached for comment yesterday but wrote on his Facebook page “Pheng Vannak News” that he had served the nation since 1988 until he was sacked from the RCAF.

“I am very proud of my work as an officer and I never hurt anyone,” he said. “I do not regret what I have lost and as long as there is still breath, there is hope.”

Mr Vannak added that there was a lot he could still do to serve the public even though he was no longer a military officer.

General Chhum Sucheat, Defence Ministry spokesman, yesterday said that ministry’s discipline council had evaluated Mr Vannak’s activities before referring his case to Gen Banh for action.

“With effect from Tuesday he has ceased to be a military officer and if he continues to act like one he will be committing a crime,” he noted.

Last month, the CPP sacked Mr Vannak from his position as a member of a party working group in Prey Veng province following his release from prison.

A letter signed by party vice-president and Interior Minister Sar Kheng said that the CPP had decided to dismiss Mr Vannak who was part of the working group in Mesang district’s Prey Khnes commune.

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