Siem Reap school headmaster accused of corruption

Cambodian Independent Teachers Association President Rong Chhun said yesterday that he had written to the Anticorruption Unit to request an investigation of a Siem Reap City high school principal.

“I want the Anticorruption Unit to investigate if this teacher has broken the law, because he keeps the ghost names [of teachers on the payroll] and takes the salaries,” Mr Chhun alleged, adding that the principal also gives students credit in exchange for bribes.

According to Mr Chhun, Hun Sen High School headmaster Sour Sovansy collects about 3.5 million riel (about $875) per month, which is equal to the salaries of ten teachers. He claimed the headmaster also collected small bribes of between 500 and 1,000 riel from individual students each month.

Chhuy Sokhom, a teacher at Hun Sen High School, alleged that the principal had been taking the salaries of “ghost teachers” on his payroll, as well as accepting student bribes, for the past five years.

“There are ten teachers who never come to teach and the headmaster keeps their ghost names and does not report to the provincial education department to delete them, and he keeps their income,” Mr Sokhom said.

Mr Sovansy, the principal, denied the charges and welcomed an investigation.

“I did not do as they accused me and I want the Anticorruption Unit to investigate” Mr Sovansy said.

Anticorruption Unit Chief Om Yentieng declined to comment yesterday, but Oung Sereidy, director of the Siem Reap provincial education department, said he would look into the allegations.

“I will investigate this case and send an officer to go down there,” Mr Sereidy said.

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