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Cambodian Government Will Take Measures To Solve World Bank Alleged Corruption Charges

Responding to the World Bank corruption charges, the Cambodian government will take measures to solve the issues involving several million dollars in 7 of the bank's development projects, alleges Prime Minister Hun Sen.

The World Bank has provided detailed evidence documents on its charges.

In a July 5th letter to the National Assembly's president, which VOA receives Monday, Mr. Hun Sen says that the government will take measures to solve the problem.

The letter is a response to opposition Sam Rainsy party (SRP) legislator Keo Remy's plea for the government not to take $7.6 million from the national budget to pay the bank in lieu of the perpetrators.

The government in the past charged the World Bank with failing to provide it with detailed evidences so that this government is able to conduct its own investigation.

The World Bank spokesman Bou Saroeun says that the bank has not submitted evidence documents on the amount of dollars alleged in the corruption yet, or asking the government to pay back, until the bank checks first, even after it has found irregularities in about $12 millions in 8 projects.

He says that the bank has not yet provided the government with the amount of dollars, because there are many contracts in the projects having some problems, so the government has to check closely for the amount of dollars, for the meetings giving each contract, when the collection of the amount of dollars for the government will be done.

Mr. Hun Sen says that the government was and is paying attention to the issue and cooperates with the the World Bank Department of Institutional Integrity.

The five ministries involved with the alleged corruption charges say they stand ready to solve the issue. Mr. Hun Sen's statement is still not clear about the nature of the measures to be taken against corrupt officials in the Ministry of Land Management and Administration project, the Ministry of Rural Development, the Ministry of Public Works and Transport Provincial and Rural Infrastructure, and the Ministry of Industry's Provincial and Peri-Urban Water and Sanitation.

Opposition Sam Rainsy party (SRP) legislator Keo Remy suggests that Mr. Hun Sen's measures be strong to eradicate impunity culture to stop corruption. He says that we cannot allow high ranking officials to do improper activities. He also says that if we receive evidences and reports about officials being corrupted, resulting in the loss of national budget, and the smearing of national name, we would ask for condemnation, especially with assetts confiscation to get money to refund the World Bank, and not taking the national budget and pay for those perpetrators.

The Center for Social Development's director Seng Theary says that she does not know why Mr. Hun Sen still needs more evidences than those submitted by the World Bank last month. She says that Mr. Hun Sen's answers make her think that they are for buying time purposes.