CPP Youth Leader to Replace Preah Vihear Governor

The heavy-handed governor of Preah Vihear, Oum Mara, will soon be replaced by one of his deputies, Un Chanda, who also serves as head of the ruling CPP’s youth arm in the province, according to a royal decree issued on Friday and made public on Tuesday.

Mr. Mara’s administration has been at the vanguard of government efforts to exert greater control over NGOs and land rights activists.

In recent years, police and officials in the province have repeatedly arrested activists, shut down meetings and even threatened to close an organization advocating for the land rights of ethnic minority communities.

Mr. Chanda, 40, has been a deputy governor in the province for more than six years and is the provincial director of the Union of Youth Federations of Cambodia, which is headed by Hun Many, the youngest son of Prime Minister Hun Sen.

“I think he is a gentle and good man,” Sou Serey, another deputy governor, said of his new boss.

“This change is not related to any problem but is a normal replacement—the government always changes out officials like this,” he said, adding that he did not know when Mr. Chanda would take up his new post.


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