Prime Minister Hun Sen used a graduation ceremony in Phnom Penh Monday to laud the variety and creativity of Khmer New Year celebrations this year.
The prime minister noted that the first Khmer New Year celebrations after the Vietnamese-backed fall of the Khmer Rouge in January 1979 had been dour, with his young family remaining at home.
He contrasted that with this year, singling out the “Angkor Sankranta” New Year festival held in Siem Reap province by the youth organization run by his son, CPP lawmaker Hun Many.
“There was one event that broke a record with a two-ton rice cake cooked by youths who cooperated with the chefs’ association for exhibition, and then they had a competition with one another, too,”
Mr. Hun Sen said. “Maybe next year another province can create a 2,500 kg rice cake to break Siem Reap’s record.”
Mr. Hun Sen added that he had also watched Chheav Bora, a rising chess whiz, win the chess competition at the Angkor Sankranta event and had decided to personally award him $3,000.