Cambodian altruism in the face of poverty
July 14, 2008, 2:54 am
Filed under: Corruption

Comment

Cambodian altruism in the face of poverty

By Kurt A. MacLeod

The Cambodia Daily, July 10, 2008

O

n the streets of the capital of Phnom Penh, I recently passed a shiny new black Rolls Royce Phantom with a sparkling silver grill. The US$400,000 vehicle was absolutely beautiful as it coasted down the streets cluttered with small entrepreneurs eking out a living on a per capita GDP of just over US$550 per year.

The previous week I had seen a 2007 Bentley with leather interior, and which sells for a quarter of a million, plying the chaotic streets of the city. As the Rolls Royce rumbled by, I thought not only about the value of the car but also about the wealth of the family that bought the car as a show of opulence in face of poverty.

I was on my way to a meeting called by a Cambodian youth organization (YRDP) that had been collecting donations for the survivors of Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar. Soon after the cyclone hit the southern Delta of Myanmar and left more than 135,000 dead or missing, 15 members of the youth group wanted to show their solidarity with the people of Myanmar. When the devastating earthquake hit China, they added the plight of those families affected. Continue reading

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Concern for Missiles Should Spread to Graft
October 14, 2007, 4:39 am
Filed under: Corruption

Opinion

 Concern for Missiles Should Spread  to Graft

By Moeun Chhean Nariddh

  

I

 commend the government for its anti-terrorism move to destroy 233 surface-to-air missiles which are worth dozens of rural roads and bridges (“Gov’t Vows To Destroy 233 Missiles,” Wednesday, page 1).

 By so doing, the government has proved that it is “horribly honest” with the US and the world and that it would do anything to smash everything deemed as dangerous weapons which can fall into the hands of terrorists.

 Now, it’s time the government should also prove that it’s also “truly honest” with the Cambodian people. Continue reading



Misuse of Funds Just the Tip of the Iceberg
October 14, 2007, 4:35 am
Filed under: Corruption

Opinion

 Misuse of Funds Just the Tip of the Iceberg

 

By Moeun Chhean Nariddh

 

W

e agree with the Cambodian Finance Minister that the government’s military demobilization team was indeed careless regarding the multimillion dollar corruption scandal within the demobilization process (“Gov’t Repays Misused Funds to World Bank,” January 21, page 1).

 However, this military demobilization corruption is just the tip of an iceberg. According to a recent US government report, every year, up to $500 million melt away mysteriously in Cambodia due to corruption like an iceberg affected by global warming.

 At the North Pole, the mount of ice that you see floating on the surface of the Artic Ocean is only one ninth of the entire iceberg. Continue reading



Fair warning
October 14, 2007, 4:28 am
Filed under: Corruption

Opinion

 Fair warning

By Moeun Chhean Nariddh
 

T

he US report on corruption in Cambodia looks pretty detailed, but not many Cambodians dare to tell more specific examples about the issue.

However, a Khmer folktale below may explain a similar case that may happen in Cambodia now.

Once upon a time, there was a rich woman named Chandear, who built her fortune by helping rich people to win lawsuits with poor people. Continue reading



Oh, What $1 Million Could Buy!
October 13, 2007, 3:00 am
Filed under: Corruption

Opinion

 Oh, What $1 Million Could Buy!

 By Moeun Chhean Nariddh

 

Oh, my dream! If I just got $1 million or $2 million from the $615 million worth of donor aid:

· I would kill my poverty!

· I would burn down my straw hut and bill a villa!

· I would throw away my oxcart and buy a Land Cruiser! Continue reading



Stop Corrupt Officials From Robbing Nation
October 7, 2007, 3:51 am
Filed under: Corruption

Opinion

 
Stop Corrupt Officials From Robbing Nation

by Moeun Chhean Nariddh

 

I

 read with great interest about the ancient methods used to combat corruption in the article, “Chinese Bribery Execution Not Unprecedented,” Tuesday, page 12.

         I can understand why corrupt officials would be castrated as part of the punishment used in the Byzantine Empire in the 11th century. Continue reading