Excellencies, Lok Chumteav, Ladies and Gentlemen
Today, I am so pleased to be able to join with all of you in putting into official use the Techo Sen Swimming Centre in the city of Kompong Cham and to speak to our sportsmen and sportswomen who just had finished their final swimming contest. Though some of you had been slow in your swimming, none of you abandoned your efforts to get to the final point.
Swimmers of the Hem Thon Family
What is worth remembering here is swimmers from the family of Mr. Hem Thon. His granddaughter Hem Thon Vitini and his son Hem Thon Ponloeu clearly show generations of swimmers and we respect his efforts in the sports until his death. I can assure the Hem Thon Swimming club that senior minister Sun Chanthol, who also is president of the Federation of Swimming Sports, has assured that he will continue to provide assistance and share responsibility with the widow of Mr, Hem Thon so that the club will carry on.
I also bestow my greeting and appreciation upon sportsmen/women and the paralimpics ones here whom live broadcast of national TV, Bayon TV, ETV and BTV as well as my Facebook account show that though handicapped and disabled, our sportsmen/women are not crippling at heart. Tomorrow, 3 December, it will be the Cambodian and International Handicap people and I would like to take this opportune moment to express my greeting for sportsmen/women from the Kingdom of Thailand for a match in a high jump event. I hope that the sports cooperation between Cambodia and Thailand will continue to grow with technical and training assistance rendered to our sportsmen/women.
The Mekong and Tunsaong Lake – Used for Swimming Practice
Now, please allow me to speak about the construction of the Techo Sen Swimming Centre in Kompong Cham. It was not less than ten times that Senior Minister HE Sun Chanthol came to me for consultation, sought my advice, and brought me progress report on the construction of the Techo Sen Swimming Centre (TSSC). I am so proud that every sports federation, the swimming sports federation also included, have taken birth one after the other. What really took us by surprise is that we now have a swimming pool of international standard. Our swimmers in the past, without a proper swimming pool, had practiced in the river of Mekong and the Tunsaong lake.
In fact, the Tunsaong lake was one that I swam across in 1973 when my troops had to withdraw from the Lon Nol force’s offensive. It was a flood season then. I swam from the light post of Tonle Bet all the way to Tuol Keo. It was not sport of any kind but an escape from being killed by the Lon Nol soldiers in time of war. That was what really happened on our land. War was in full swing. It was nothing like peace and development we are having these days.
Fortieth Marriage Anniversary on 5 January 2016
Should there be any time left, I would cross the river to the eastern shore to see some of the sites in memory of my eye wound – Roka Thom and Ji Rot. It was the event linked me to my beloved wife. Before long, you will find out who fell in love with whom. In just over a month, it will be the fortieth anniversary of my marriage – 5 January 1976 and 5 January 2016. I will post a long elaboration of a memory between my wife and I.
A Proper Place for Swimming Practice
Let me now talk about what we have achieved here. I am happy really and wish to express my sincere appreciation for the federation of Cambodian swimming sports led by HE Sun Chanthol for the efforts and cooperation and they made with the provincial authority. I also thank the various contributors whom I cannot mention all of their names here. The construction cost over 1.5 million USD, which has not yet included costs of purchasing and equipping some materials and tools. From today on, our swimming sportsmen/women, Paralympics also included, could use this national, regional and international standard swimming pools for their practices. We can also broadcast live from here to people in the whole country as well as to the world.
I can say with pride that where there is peace and political stability, we can initiate and achieve any development as we desire. I have no right to prohibit anyone from being joyful or distressing. However, I understand that people in the whole country are living happily with their families and are preparing to harvest as well as to cultivate their dry season grains.
More Jobs and Incomes for Kompong Cham
I would take this opportune moment to express my sincere thanks for generous fellows for their financial contribution for the construction of such internationally standard swimming centre, which according to the report of Senior Minister Sun Chanthol consists of not only swimming pool for contest but also those for warming up and other relevant activities. I am taking this opportune moment to express my sincere appreciation for former governor of Kompong Cham HE Hun Neng and the current governor HE Lun Limthai for providing full cooperation for this achievement to happen.
This will make Kompong Cham a well-known province and open prospects of jobs and incomes whenever there will be national and international level competitions. People whose business concerns hospitality and food will see this prospect coming their ways. I am sure, we all are proud with what we have built. Event we celebrate today clearly show the people of Cambodia and world that Cambodia enjoys full peace and political stability. There are no threats of terror or pressure from any political crisis. We are marching forward. We make our journey speedier, longer, and more effective. I also hope speedy development of our swimming sports.
I also take this chance to draw the attention of swimming federations and authority every level that gathering resources for the construction of the centre was hard but to sustain its operation would not be less. I hope our sportsmen/women and those of you sharing interest here will participate in keeping care of the place as a national property. We are making our steps towards 2023 when Cambodia will host Sea Games. I have a strong hope that the centre will become one of the contesting sites during the games or at least a site where our sportsmen/women will have a contest for final competition in Phnom Penh.
2 December – Founding Anniversary of National United Front for Salvation of Kampuchea
Today, we are putting into official operation the achievement on 2 December, the 37th anniversary of the establishment of the National United Front for Salvation of Kampuchea, which later overthrew the genocidal regime of Pol Pot. Samdech Heng Samrin and other leaders are celebrating today in Phnom Penh such event to memorize the foundation of a political and military organization that later overthrew the genocidal regime of Pol Pot. 2 December, let me affirm, is a common event to everyone who wish to live and not die under the genocidal regime. Real enemy of 2 December was the political organization of the Pol Pot regime. No one else is its enemy, no matter what generation s/he may belong to – former, present, and coming ones. If the previous generations did not to exist, there would not be a successive one. We all must stand up and welcome achievements and victories in overthrowing the genocidal regime.
2 December – Anniversary of Sihanouk-Hun Sen Forum at Fére-en-Tardenois
Another remarkable event also falls on 2 December – the 28th anniversary of the Sihanouk-Hun Sen peace meeting in Fére-en-Tardenois, France, which served as foundation for political settlement for Cambodia’s peace. The Sihanouk-Hun Sen meeting at Fére-en-Tardenois opened ways for concerned parties – national and foreign ones, in Cambodian conflicts to take part in peace process, hence achieving the Paris Peace Agreement on 23 October 1991. It was a date when we searched for peace, ended conflict and brought national reconciliation for Cambodia. I would affirm on this occasion that the 2 December Sihanouk-Hun Sen Fére-en-Tardenois meeting as a date for peace and reconciliation.
2 December – Setout of Triangular Strategy in Second Legislative Term RGC
On 2 December of 1998, when it was the first meeting of the second legislative term of the National Assembly Royal Government, I set out the triangular strategy aimed at resolving remaining issues and issues to carry though to the present. What is the triangular strategy? The first angle of the triangular strategy was to achieve pacification in the whole country. In other word to strengthen peace after seceding and dismantling Khmer Rouge’s political and military organization. Khieu Samphan, Nuon Chea and Ta Mok, in those days, had not yet brought themselves out in open, though Pailin, Samlot, Mealai and Anlong Veng, Khmer Rouge’s last stronghold, already fell and joined the July-1998 general elections. We needed to achieve peace in the whole country then.
The second angle was to integrate Cambodia quickly into international communities, starting from occupying the Cambodian seat at the United Nations, right after the establishment of the new Royal Government and other Cambodian institutions. We also made efforts to join ASEAN, Asia-Europe Meeting, World Trade Organization, and other international organizations. We say in short to integrate Cambodia as soon as we can into international community.
Angle three of the triangular strategy was to make use of internal and external favorable conditions to strand into joint efforts for socio-economic development and reduce people’s poverty though numerous reforms – legal, public administration, public financial, armed forces, judicial reforms, etc. These efforts have resulted in an achievement that Cambodia has transformed from low income to lower-middle income country, i.e. from when people’s income was only 200 USD per annum to currently 1,300 USD.
To carry through, we have developed rectangular strategy phase I, II and III and we have made various achievements there to prove like the Kizuna bridge here and many others. Let me finish here and thank you all for joining this meaningful event today./.