Prime Minister Receives Complaints of High Ferry Costs

A complaint sent Monday to Prime Minister Hun Sen by four representatives of disgruntled passengers accusing a Kandal province ferry operator of overcharging passengers is “exaggerated,” a Khsach Kandal district official said Wednesday.

The complaint includes a threat against the ferry owner if no action is taken and is finger-printed by resident Ing Kuky, soldier Seuo Bun Hy, military policeman Kao Samith, and civil servant So Sopheap. They claim to represent 523 people from four communes.

“Prime Minister Hun Sen, kindly oversee the wrongdoing of the ferry owner, who has overcharged passengers,” the letter states. “If not, there will be a violation on the ferry owner soon.”

No action has been taken by the prime minister’s office so far.

Keung Samon, owner of the ferry, said she had done nothing wrong, and that the prices for passage are printed on the ferry.

The letter says that the Ministry of Finance has directed all ferries to charge the same amount, but the Khsach Kandal ferry is charging more.

Keung Samon said her ferry costs the same as the directive—500 riel per passenger and up to 10,000 riel for a medium-sized vehicle.

District governor Chev Saren said the complaint is unfair. He said the complaint is an attempt to destroy a business that “a few people” want for themselves.

“I think just a few people want to run the business at this place, so they try to force villagers to give finger printing to support them,” he said.

The letter is an attempt to make a business dispute “appear as a big matter,” he said. “I think they should not have created a small matter to disturb the prime minister.”

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