The government is providing free bus rides for people in the capital to and from their home provinces during Khmer New Year.
Prime Minister Hun Sen on Thursday said that City Hall will provide 120 public buses for the purpose.
“I want to take this opportunity to inform that Phnom Penh Municipal Hall is allocating 120 public buses for all citizens and workers to travel from Phnom Penh to other provinces and from the provinces back to Phnom Penh free of charge for seven days from Friday to April 18,” he said at a dinner for athletes, coaches, and sports officials.
Mr Hun Sen noted that he gave up urging owners of private bus companies not to increase fares during the New Year and Pchum Ben Day because his previous appeals have fallen on deaf ears, resulting in his decision to offer the free bus services.
Mr Hun Sen yesterday appealed to taxi drivers and owners of hotels and guesthouses not to raise prices during the New Year period.
“In order to facilitate our people and also tourists to enjoy the upcoming Khmer New Year, please taxi drivers and the owners of hotels and guesthouses do not increase prices, so they can save some money to celebrate the New Year with their families,” he said.
The Prime Minister also posted some contact numbers for people to get information about the free bus services. They are: 081-817-474, 078-817-474 and 098-555-58.
Khuong Sreng, Phnom Penh governor, said that the buses will travel on all national roads and the free services start from 5.30am on Friday.
He said that those who do not go back to their provinces for the holiday can also enjoy free bus and taxi boat rides in the capital from Friday until April 18.
San Chey, executive director of Affiliated Network for Social Accountability Cambodia, yesterday said that the government is doing the right thing by providing free transportation to the people, especially those with low incomes.
“I think it is good that the government is providing free public buses for everyone to travel to their hometowns in the provinces, but it should also extend the service right up to the villages instead of just stopping at the main towns,” he said.