Phnom Penh Governor Khoung Sreng today appealed to all local authorities to cooperate with civil society groups and not to threaten them if they are carrying out legal activities.
He was speaking at a consultative forum, attended by nearly 1,000 NGOs, on Koh Pich to discuss resolving issues and promoting cooperation between the government and civil society groups.
Mr Sreng appealed to the Armed Forces, City Hall, local authorities and other relevant parties to coordinate and facilitate the work of registered NGOs and not threaten or intimidate them.
“The government does not discriminate against any activities of legally-registered NGOs as has been claimed,” he said. “The government does not suppress their freedom to conduct political or any other activity.”
Mr Sreng suggested that representatives of development partners, communities, and NGOs should continue to support and engage with local authorities at all levels to promote democracy, provide social services and develop social and economic development in a more integrated partnership with high responsibility.
He noted that there are now 5,523 local NGOs registered with the Interior Ministry, and 419 foreign NGOs associations which have signed a memorandum of understanding with the Foreign Affairs Ministry to conduct activities in accordance with applicable laws, without any hindrance or barriers.
Full story in Wednesday’s paper