Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Factory Shooting Farce & Why Cambodia Needs An Aung San Suu Kyi

A column I wrote for Khmer 440...

I read an interesting interview at the weekend with a Khmer academic living in America who warns that Cambodia desperately needs an Aung San Suu Kyi or Nelson Mandela figure to protect the rights of its down-trodden people.

The country is not just being let down by what he calls “Class Z” leaders who rule the Kingdom largely unopposed, but also by the weakness of its opposition figures, says Naranhkiri Tith, a former professor at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, who fled to the US in the 1960s.

“Where on Earth can a country like that survive?” he told Voice Of America Khmer. “Cambodians need the quality of Aung San Suu Kyi and Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, who have great moral strength” to fight for freedom, human rights, and protect the land and its people, he added.

Critics say many of the problems in the country are the result of a failed court system and a government where the power is concentrated into the hands of one person rather than the state.

There are few better examples than the continued foot-dragging over the arrest of former Bavet town governor Chhouk Bandith – a scandal that has become a major embarrassment for Cambodia...

Continue reading...

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