Six commune police officers from Ratanakkiri province’s Banlung City submitted a petition this week demanding the removal of their police chief for allegedly embezzling state funds and treating his subordinates “like rubbish,” officials said Thursday.
The complaint, dated Monday, says that if commune police chief Phorn Tum is not removed the six officers will resign their positions in Laban Siek commune.
“We are not happy with Mr. Phorn Tum because he doesn’t have leadership, is arrogant and makes decisions by himself,” says the complaint, which was filed with the commune chief Wednesday.
Yun Kong, a deputy to Mr. Tum who thumbprinted the complaint, accused his boss of embezzling money allocated to commune police by the provincial police office.
“I think that Mr. Phorn Tum committed corruption because he never let us know what he used the money for,” he said.
Mr. Kong added that Mr. Tum also repeatedly mistreated his subordinates.
“He is from a younger generation but he uses very rude words to the lower-level officials,” he said. “Mr. Tum has no leadership skills, because he looks down on his officials like rubbish when he gives orders.”
Contacted Thursday, Mr. Tum said that the accusations of corruption were false and he had used the money for an anti-drug operation that the six officers were not aware of.
“I did not commit corruption because I am so young, so I want to have a good reputation for doing my job,” he said.
Mr. Tum added that when he gives orders to his officers, they are often ignored.
“When I receive orders from my boss I ask my lower officials to work, but sometimes they do not pick up my phone and sometimes they refuse my orders,” he said. “I must be strict with those people because they do not respect my orders.”
Banlung City police chief Huot Borey said the complaint was forwarded to him Wednesday, and that he sent it on to provincial police chief Nguon Koeun, who declined to comment.