Hun Sen Says He Has Bad Rap for Rent Collection

Prime Minister Hun Sen on Monday criticized administrators of public markets who insist on collecting daily rents from vendors in the morning rather than the afternoon, saying that he would put an end to the practice after multiple complaints from vendors.

“Early in the morning, when they [the vendors] haven’t had a chance to do good business yet, they [the rent collectors] go to kick the vegetable baskets,” Mr. Hun Sen said in a speech at the National Institute of Education in Phnom Penh.

“I heard from the market, the sellers complain and the buyers also complain.”

The day-to-day administration of most public markets is contracted out to private companies, but Mr. Hun Sen ordered Phnom Penh Governor Pa Socheatvong, who was present at Monday’s speech, to look into the issue and establish greater oversight over these companies so that vendors are not mistreated.

The prime minister also complained that all injustices in Cambodia, no matter how small, are perceived as emanating from him.

“If there is some problem, the thing that happened was due to the prime minister. If the market money collectors go to kick baskets, it is caused by Hun Sen.

If the court sentence is unjust, it is caused by Hun Sen,” he said.

In fact, he added, the courts are independent and the market collectors have been acting without his knowledge.

“Please, market money collectors, improve your attitudes,” he admonished them.

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