About 50 residents evicted from Phnom Penh’s Boeng Kak neighborhood in 2008 and 2009 to make way for a senator’s real estate project once again protested in front of City Hall Monday to demand better compensation.
They are among some 3,000 families who were forced to choose between an $8,500 payout or free housing on the city’s outskirts in exchange for their central Phnom Penh homes, but have maintained that neither option was fair.
“We are campaigning in front of City Hall to put pressure on the city to pay us $20,000 each because the compensation we were forced to accept is unreasonable,” said Pring Kea.
A few protesters were briefly let inside to hand over a letter with their demands but canceled plans to camp overnight after Daun Penh district security guards allegedly confiscated their cooking equipment and pushed them from the gates.
City Hall spokesman Long Dimanche said the protesters’ demands were out of the question. Kim Vutha, the district security chief, denied that his officers had taken the women’s cooking equipment.