Hun Sen To Tee Off for Charity With Premiers of Laos, Vietnam

Later this month Prime Minister Hun Sen will play a little golf with the prime ministers of Vietnam and Laos to help the poor in all three countries, Tourism Minister Thong Khon said Tuesday.

As many as 200 other golfers from the three countries will also tee off in the Cambodia-Laos-Vietnam Friendship Charity Golf Tournament, which is scheduled for March 28 at Long Thanth Golf Club near Ho Chi Minh City, according to a news release.

Sponsorships and donations at the tournament, which doesn’t have an entry fee, will be used to build houses, treat the blind, and help the poor pay for school, among other things, Thong Khon said.

“We will just get together and en­joy together and raise the funds from the businesses,” he said by telephone, adding that businesses don’t need to participate to contribute.

“We are interested in this golf, as we like to help poor people, and I think that money from this could reduce poverty in the three countries,” he said. “I announce for all businessmen, generous people or donors who invest in Cambodia—Cambodian or foreigner—please, for the poor people, support this golf on March 28 in Vietnam.”

Minister of Commerce Cham Prasidh said it is the first time a golf tournament to help the poor has been organized by the three countries, although Vietnam has held similar tournaments on its own.

“In 2008, Vietnam got $6 million from this charity tournament,” he said. “We do not know how much we will get, but I think we should get more than $6 million, and the prime ministers will discuss to divide the funds.”

The tournament will be broadcast on television, and the winner will get 18 damlung of gold, worth nearly $20,000, he added.

Next year, the three-country fundraiser might be held outside Vietnam, Thong Khon said.

“Next year, maybe we [will] move to Cambodia, and maybe the next year to Laos,” he said.

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