The government started construction on what will become Cambodia’s largest drug rehabilitation center on Thursday in Preah Sihanouk province, after more than six years of discussion and proposals.
Ke Kim Yan, chairman of the National Authority for Combating Drugs (NACD), said workers had broken ground on the project in Stung Hav district’s Keo Phos commune.
Mong Reththy, a ruling party senator and tycoon with close ties to Prime Minister Hun Sen, donated 20 hectares of land for the center in 2009, when the idea for the facility was first broached.
Meas Vyrith, secretary-general of the NACD, said the building currently under construction would serve as an administrative facility and house between 85 and 200 staff members.
He was unsure when the offices would be finished.
Mr. Vyrith said the community-based rehabilitation center would be able to treat up to 2,000 patients at a time and cost between $5 million and $8 million.
The entire facility is slated to begin construction by November.
Mr. Vyrith said last year that there were nearly 10,000 drug users nationwide who were not currently in rehabilitation but needed help.