Five families among a community of 40 that have been fighting a powerful developer for land they live on in Phnom Penh’s Chroy Changva district accepted compensation packages on Monday, the first cracks in a previously united community.
Suy Chomnap, a district commune clerk, said that the families had taken apartments in a nearby block built by the Overseas Cambodian Investment Corporation (OCIC), which has a $3 billion real estate plan for the area and had offered apartments to the 40 families refusing to cede their land and demanding that OCIC stop pumping sand around their homes.
Mr. Chomnap said that OCIC had given these five families new dwellings for reasons other than to pump sand into the wetlands.
“It’s not for pumping sand,” Mr. Chomnap said.
“The company can see that this is a flood area and that these people were poor, so they offered them a flat.”
Ya Leang Hak, a representative of the families from Kean Khleang village, said he was concerned that after failing to evict the community as a whole, OCIC and district officials were now attempting to pick them off a few at a time.