Home > Local News > Provincial officials in graft warning

Provincial officials in graft warning

Photo by: Heng Chivoan

A pair of SUVs passes by the Anticorruption Institution in Phnom Penh on Sunday. During January and
February, officials will collect asset declarations from around 100,000 government officials.

Anticorruption Unit head Om Yentieng has reportedly accused several
dozen officials in Kampong Thom province, including the provincial
governor, of taking bribes from those involved in the illegal logging
trade.

A Kampong Thom provincial military police officer said
that during a meeting in the province on Thursday to educate local
officials about the Kingdom’s newly-implemented Anticorruption Law, Om
Yentieng identified by name officials who he said were “black-listed”
and under investigation by the ACU.

“There was a closed-door
meeting on the sidelines of yesterday’s meeting with the individuals who
are on the black list of the ACU, and His Excellency Om Yentieng warned
them to immediately stop taking bribes from those who transport
illegally logged timber,” said the official, who spoke on condition of
anonymity.

“[Om Yentieng] warned that if these officials are discovered taking bribes a second time, they will face law enforcement.”

The
military police officer said those on the “black list” included Kampong
Thom provincial governor Chhun Chhorn, as well as officials from the
provincial police, military police and Forestry Administration.

Chhun Chhorn declined to comment on the allegations.

“I
am afraid to give detailed information about the ACU,” he said Sunday.
“I cannot talk about that – all information must come directly from the
head of the ACU.”

Om Yentieng and ACU spokesman Keo Remy could
not be reached for comment on Sunday. Kheang Seng, the ACU’s head of law
enforcement, said only Om Yentieng had the documents identifying which
officials were on the black list.

Prime Minister Hun Sen
announced a crackdown on illegal logging last year and sacked Forestry
Administration head Ty Sokun in April for failing to adequately address
the issue. However, few officials have been prosecuted as part of the
crackdown. ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY JAMES O’TOOLE

Phnom Penh Post
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Categories: Local News
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