Former Floating Villagers Complain About Life On Land

Kampong Chhnang: More than 700 families in Plou Touk commune, Kampong Leng district, Kampong Chhnang province, agreed to follow the plans of the Kampong Chhnang provincial administration between 2018 and 2019 by relocating from the water to live on land. Housing allocated for each family was given to them; 20 meters x 100 meters, but the land allotted above is too small to grow crops for subsistence farming, so they asked the district and provincial authorities to ask for land. Some more for cultivation.

The request of more than 700 families has been ongoing for almost 3 years, and has not yet received a response or a solution from the Kampong Chhnang provincial authorities, and now more complaints have been lodged on the morning of August 3, 2021.

They all used to live on floating houses along canals and rivers, and more than 90% were engaged in fishing for livelihood and 10% in farming. In the past, the authorities told them to be patient for a while, but now they all ask the authorities to help find land for them quickly, because time is gold, time is the needed for the life of the people in crop cultivation to survive.

The 700+ families recalled that during 2018 and 2019, when the authorities instructed them to move from floating houses to live on land as planned by the Kampong Chhnang provincial administration, the authorities promised 5 points:

1. Promises to build a school,

2- Promises to build a health center,

3- Promises to build a road from Kampong Leng district town to Plou Touk commune,

4- Promises to dig wells and ponds for people to use,

5. The authorities have promised to distribute residential land, including arable land, to the people appropriately.

So far, the authorities have implemented four points, but in the distribution of land to people for farming, they have not received the land.

In 2019, the district and provincial authorities submitted a request for approval from the Royal Government to cut off more than 1,100 hectares of land in Veal Sra Nge area and distribute it to the people in Phum Touk Touk commune who moved their floating houses to live on land for farming. The request is still pending. CEN

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