… I am glad to return to the district of Phnom Sruoch after my visit a few years ago to the commune of Mohasaing when the access road to the area was in fact a dirt road for oxcarts. I will, with all of you today, inaugurate not only a rural road but various other achievements that were realized in the district of Phnom Sruoch. May I take this opportunity to give my appreciation to the Ministry of Rural Development and the Ministry of Economy and Finance for the efforts they made in realizing this project, which, improving the communication infrastructure in the rural area is a priority of the Royal Government of Cambodia and I am also grateful to the two companies that are implementing this project by their own funding and the state will refund them later.
… Just now HE Governor Ou Bun and HE Suos Kung of the Ministry of Rural Development have made reports on the various achievements in the Kompong Speu province as well as the situation in this area of Phnom Sruoch district before and after the construction of the road. It is true that this road never exists before and it has come into shape at the present time with our efforts under the locomotive of growth strategy of the Royal Government of Cambodia. I have a strong belief that if we were to have no road connections, reduction of poverty would be just a nice sentence to speak. We would not be able to integrate among different parts of Cambodia, not to mention the region. We would not be able to talk about reducing gaps between old and new ASEAN states, as we could not close the gaps among our communes. Take for instance the communes and district of Phnom Sruoch would be disconnected from the town of Kompong Speu if the bridges and roads were not built yet.
… The district of Phnom Sruoch was in theory under the Government control ever since when the French was in Cambodia. But they mostly controlled the area only in the map. To be frank, the district was in fact one of the main areas of the anti-Government forces – to mention also the Government before 1970. Nuon Chea, Khiev Samphan and Ta Mok were in fact operating in this area. In between 1968 and 1969, in an area from Koh Kong to Kompot, and some other places included, were named as a sub-provincial administration Sra Kar Neak. In between 1970 and 1975, this area was in fact a war place and after 1979 the people in this area were also living in an insecure situation. It has taken us in all 20 years since 1979 to bring our people in the district of Phnom Sruoch a durable peace. We now have a chance to transform this poor and unfortunate area into a developed one like elsewhere in the country. There has been a report of increasing traffics in this road and the travel expense has also gone down because of the good road condition. This is in fact the policy of poverty reduction.
… I think you all may have heard in the last few days about my letter sent to HM the King for the verification of Mr. Ruom Rith’s identity and address. And there were exchanges of letters between myself and HM the King and Mr. Ruom Rith. Mr. Ruom Rith has been writing to criticize the Royal Government, myself almost half a decade already. He has written that he hopes that Hun Sen no longer criticizes HM the King. I have kept this till after the Khmer New Year to ask who Ruom Rith could be. I would like his address so that he could be contacted for verifying his writing that I criticize HM the King. When I asked HM the King, HM replied that Ruom Rith is afraid of being assassinated like Haing Ngor in the United States so he declines to give the address. Mr Ruom Rith wrote me afterward a letter asking for an apology and said he is too old and loses conscience. Despite what he says about himself, Ruom Rith proved himself to be a famous writer, keeping abreast of the current situation of Cambodia as if he is somewhere with us. I accepted his apology and I would say this should be an end to the row. But I would not expect further hidden criticism at all. I would argue for justice and if as Prime Minister I could not get justice, who else could be secured with justice? I have to defend justice in this course because it is a matter of historical reality. Some people say Ruom Rith is in fact HM the King but HM confirms that Ruom Rith is in fact his friend from childhood. I belief that because if HM the King would need something to be done, he would instruct me to and the Prime Minister will abide by his instruction without HM having to disguise in a fake name like that.
… This area used to be under war till peace is achieved in 1999 and now with peace we build schools, roads, hospitals. I have a great ambition and it is for the achievements of three priorities – irrigations, roads and schools. Where water is prime need, it is necessary to focus on irrigation system while development area in the western part of Phnom Penh two priorities have to be addressed – irrigation and roads. We also have to provide education to our children and I hope to see that in Cambodia everyone is literate and at least each Cambodian finishes a nine year education. My ambitions have proven to you all that they are not for me alone but for our nation. I hope Ruom Rith understands my wish and would refrain from making his article a chance for the opposition to base on in their fight against the Government. HM the King praises the Prime Minister for his good works and Ruom Rith rebukes the Prime Minister in HM the King’s monthly bulletin. It is quite contradictory and would mislead readers that HM the King and the Prime Minister are in disarray…
Samdech Hun Sen offered three school buildings of fifteen classrooms to the College of Phnom Sruoch, a school building of five classrooms for the Primary School of Prey Khmeng, a school building of five classrooms for the Primary School of Sansam Kosal of Treng Trayeoung, ten million Riel for the Pagoda of Bantoap to finish the construction of a Dharma School, ten million Riel for the pagoda of Tuol Angkum for the construction of a Dharma Hall, two tons of steel for the pagoda of Kiriboeungchum, ten million Riel for the pagoda of Damnak Trach, tem million Riel for the pagoda of Banteaykuo, etc.