New Commission Formed To Solve Kob Srov Case

One week after Long Chhin Resorts was ordered to stop filling in Kob Srov lake to build a resort and housing project, an official said Wednesday that a commission comprised of nine government ministries has been formed to try to resolve the case.

The commission has been set up to investigate the dispute and find a solution, said Tep Sothy, governor of Ponhea Leu district in Kandal province, where part of the lake is situated.

Tep Sothy said he did not know all the ministries that would be involved, but he said the committee would include the Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology.

It emerged on July 16 that Long Chhin Resorts, a Chinese firm, had begun filling in Kob Srov lake earlier this year. The 2001 Land Law states that lakes are state public land and cannot be sold.

On July 17, Minister of Water Resources and Meteorology Lim Kean Hor ordered a halt to the construction, saying the lake was essential for Phnom Penh’s water drainage system and must not be tampered with.

The company, however, claim­ed that it had approval directly from Prime Minister Hun Sen, though Lim Kean Hor said no permission had been granted to fill in the lake.

Doung Sam Ang, who is in charge of construction for Long Chhin Resorts, said Wednesday that the company’s work on the lake had been halted.

“We stopped doing any thing at this place last week, while we wait for the appropriate ministry’s solution,” he said, adding that he was looking forward to forging ahead with the lake filling.

“We have a land title and we need to work on it and develop it,” Doung Sam Ang said.

Phang Sareth, secretary of state at the Ministry of Water Re­sources and Meteorology, said that Kob Srov lake plays an im­portant role in draining flood water. He also said that his ministry informed Long Chhin Re­sorts four years ago that it could not fill in the lake.

“Kob Srov lake is very important to relieve flooding. If Phnom Penh is flooded, we would have a lot of damage,” he said.


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