Category Archives: Feature Story
Educating children via video tutorial
Even though some children do not focus much on studying, they are still able to gain knowledge when watching our programs because we have combined entertainment and education.
“Hello, kids! Welcome to the Khmer literature tutorial! In this VCD, you will learn how to write Khmer consonants and vowels while also learning about social morality and the many ways you can practice being a good person.”
The above sentences are voiced by an animated cartoon character in an introduction video meant to demonstrate to children all the benefits they can receive from the VCD, a video tutorial on the Khmer language produced by You Can School. The video, which can be bought in markets across the country, is just one of many locally produced VCDs that have been using video and animation instead of live teachers to instruct children in a variety of subjects.
Started in 2008, You Can School has published 20 volumes of video tutorials in various subjects.
Ourn Sarath, the director of You Can School and a producer of the tutorial videos, says there are a lot of benefits that children and parents can get from these videos.
“Even though some children do not focus much on studying, they are still able to gain knowledge when watching our programs because we have combined entertainment and education in each video,” Ourn Sarath says.
He adds that parents who have more than one child can save money by buying one video for all their children. The children can watch the tutorial together and replay it multiple times until they understand the content.
BS Studio is another video tutorial company that has been in operation since 2008. So far, this company has produced 12 volumes of tutorials, spending around two months to produce a single VCD. Some of these tutorials teach Khmer, some teach English, and all are aimed at children.
“Because of the novelty of this teaching method, we get a lot of support from parents, some of whom even buy the tutorials for relatives living in foreign countries who want to study Khmer,” Chhem Sotvannak, a producer at the BS Studio says. He adds that Adobe After Effect software is used to make all the motion pictures.
Heng Sokha, a teacher at the Institute of Foreign Languages (IFL) and the mother of a six-year-old child, says she was unaware that there were instructional videos in the Khmer language, but added that she had bought some of the English-instruction cartoon tutorials for her child, starting at age two.
“I bought some Hollywood cartoons for my child to watch, and I saw an improvement in her listening and speaking abilities compared to other children of the same age,” Heng Sokha says.
“After watching my baby improve a lot, I have decided to continue buying videos for her at increasingly advanced levels.” Nonetheless, these videos cannot replace traditional teaching.
“I don’t think it’s right to keep children at home and simply have them watch videos,” says 25-year-old Men Ponleu, who has been working as a pre-school teacher for more than six years.
She explains that videos should be used only to review lessons children have already learned at school.
“Students can only practice with videos if they have a teacher to bounce questions off,” Men Ponleu says.
“This kind of video works well for children who already have some basic education,” echoes Ourn Sarath. He adds that the aim of creating the videos was to complement, not replace traditional education.06/07/2011 By: Dara Saoyuth This article was published on LIFT, Issue 78 published on July 06, 2011
Living in a pagoda, an alternative to stay and study in Phnom Penh_edited version
Measuring just 8 square metres, it’s about half as big as a typical school classroom. One student is doing his homework on a table supporting two desktop computers, adjacent to a broken window. Another student strolls in and begins searching for some lost items in a row of old plastic closets on the opposite side of the room. All in all, the room isn’t much different from the other eight rooms at the monastery, each housing four students in a tiny space. Monastery 10 stands to the west of the main entrance to Mahamuntrei pagoda, surrounded by a number of stupas.
Oeum Vanna, 25, who hails from Kampong Speu province and hopes to continue his education at university, has been living in the pagoda for more than three years.
As he walks out of his room in his student’s uniform, he explains how he came to stay at the pagoda. “My parents asked this pagoda for permission two years before my high-school graduation,” says the first of four children born to a Kampong Speu farming family.
Ouem Vanna says that living at a pagoda means one has to adhere to its internal rules, including being out no later than 9pm. That deadline is not flexible, as at that time, the monks lock the gates of the pagoda for the security of the students.
Not every student who comes from the provinces gets a chance to stay at a city pagoda. “Only students with good backgrounds who come from impoverished conditions are permitted to stay here,” says Sao Oeun, head of the monastery at Mahamuntrei pagoda. Sao Oeun is responsible for administering the activities in the nine-room building.
He explains that every student seeking to live at the pagoda needs to undergo background checks to make sure he has a good academic history, no criminal record, and has displayed exemplary behaviour, as judged by his village chief or school principal.
Sao Oeun says he doesn’t want troublemakers at the pagoda, because this would disturb the lives of the rest of the students.
In fact, monks from the provinces with hopes of changing their own pagodas in some way have first priority when space is being allocated at the pagoda. All the extra rooms go to students from rural areas. “There are not many rooms for all students who want to be in the Phnom Penh, but at least we can help some of them,” the head of the monastery says.
Mahamuntrei pagoda is not the only place students can seek accommodation when transferring to the city to continue their education. Samrong Andet, in Sangkat Phnom Penh Thmey, just outside Phnom Penh, is another pagoda that accepts rural students seeking to better their circumstances.
Since 1993, when the pagoda began accepting students, thousands have stayed there free of charge. Two hundred are currently staying at the pagoda. Ra Son, one of the four monks responsible for overseeing the pagoda boys, says the pagoda’s grounds contain 100 rooms in which students can stay, with two students occupying each small room and four in each large room.
Even after face-to-face interviews and extensive background checks, not all the miscreants can be weeded out, and some still commit offences while living at the pagoda.
“No one can be perfect all the time,” Ra Son says philosophically.29/06/2011 By: Dara Saoyuth and Tang Khyhay This article was published on LIFT, Issue 77 published on June 29, 2011
- Living in a pagoda, an alternative to stay and study in Phnom Penh_original version (saoyuth.wordpress.com)
- My day with Khmer manuscript restoration team (saoyuth.wordpress.com)
Living in a pagoda, an alternative to stay and study in Phnom Penh_original version
Dear student blog visitors,
Below is a feature story focusing on the way of life of people living in pagoda. Here is the original version (not edited from any editor) I wrote with another LIFT reporter. The reason I decide to post the original version is that I don’t think the published version (already edited and cut) is fully covered as what we intended to do.
Enjoy reading here,
It is smaller than half of the typical school classroom, about eight square meters. Equipped with two desktop computers on the desk just next to the broken window, one student was doing his homework while another entered the room searching for his clothes in the two old plastic closets opposite the computers. With separated bathroom, it is not different from other eight rooms in the monastery where four students squeeze together for shelter. As quiet as the other monastery, the monastery number ten stands on the west of the main entrance of Mahamuntrei pagoda, surrounded by a number of stupas.
From Kampong Speu province and hope to continue his higher education in university, Oem Vanna, age 25, has been living in the pagoda for more than three years. Walking out of his room in student’s uniform, he stated how he could get to stay in the pagoda.
“My parents asked for the permission in this pagoda two years before my high school graduation,” said Oeum Vanna, the first son born in a farmer family that has four children.
Oeum Vanna said that living in the pagoda has to adhere to the internal rule of the monastery for example he could not be out later than nine o’clock at night since monks will lock the gates for the safety of the others.
However, not every student who comes from the provinces has a chance to settle down at the pagodas in the city. “All students who were permitted to stay here have to be in good background and in poor living condition,” said Sao Oeun, head of the monastery in Mahamuntrei pagoda, where he controls a nine-room building.
He said everyday student who were able to live here has to be verified with no criminal record, good academic performance and behavior from the village chief or school principal, explaining that he did not want the trouble makers to stay in the Buddhist area, and this would also disturb to the live of other students in the monastery.
Since the priority to be in the pagoda was given to monks at the provinces who hopes to change their pagodas for some reasons, the remaining available space keeps for students from the rural areas. “There are not many rooms for all students who want to be in the Phnom Penh, but at least we can help some of them,” said the head of the monastery.
Mahamuntrei pagoda is not the only place where students can ask for accommodation while they transfer their study to the city. In Sangkat Phnom Penh Thmey just outside Phnom Penh, Samrong Andet pagoda is one of the pagodas that can accept much more students than others. Since 1993, students have been accepted to stay in pagoda and so far, there are thousands of them who used to stay there while another more than two hundred students are staying in the pagoda for free of charge.
Ra Son, one among the four monks who are responsible in taking control of pagoda boys, said that the pagoda has around one hundred rooms varying from small to large rooms for students to stay, and the number of students in each room depends on the room’s size which normally two people in a small room and four people in a large room.
By just selecting students based on face-to-face meeting and reading their background from official papers they hand in, not all students being selected are good, and as a result, some of them commit offense upon living in pagoda.
“Some students have committed offenses because people are not perfect all the time,” said Ra Son; adding that if it is just a small offense, he would advise them not to do that again. But if it is rather big, he would ask their parents to come and talk, and if it is a big offense like criminal behavior, he would send them to authority in charged.
In Samrong Andet pagoda, students have to wake up and join a prayer program with monks about half an hour every morning starting from 5:35. “We not only call them to pray, but the other four monks and me take turn to educate all of them each morning, especially on how to behave well in the society,” said Ra Son.
Pagoda Students do not have to pay for monthly rented fees and even can have free meals as well as getting education from monks. Even though pagodas seem to be a good place for poor students who apt for education in the city, they are not meant as permanent accommodations.
Oem Vanna who has been living in Mahamuntrei pagoda for almost four years said that he had planned to leave pagoda and rented a room when his younger brother finished high school and came to Phnom Penh.
“When I first arrived in the city, pagoda was the only place for me because I do not have any money to rent a room, but now I got a job and at least can afford it, so i think that I should give opportunity for some other students from provinces to pursue their education.”29/06/2011 By: Dara Saoyuth and Tang Khyhay
- My day with Khmer manuscript restoration team (saoyuth.wordpress.com)
Libraries a brilliant learning resource
“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go,” said Dr. Seuss, an American writer and cartoonist best known for his collection of children’s books. The poem I Can Read with My Eyes Shut was intended to demonstrate the benefits of reading.
The poem may not resonate that much in Cambodia, where reading rates are low compared to foreign averages – especially those of Americans, who always seem to travel with a book in hand. Laziness and illiteracy are often offered as explanations for the lack of a strong reading culture here.
But from my perspective, as a Cambodian who has lived in this country for almost 20 years, I figure the resources and opportunities afforded the average Cambodian may also have something to do with it.
Libraries are usually considered vast reservoirs of written knowledge, but how many Cambodians can truly access this invaluable resource?
In this article, we’ll discuss reasons preventing and discouraging Cambodian students from accessing libraries.
The first, and most important, reason is that the number of libraries in the Kingdom cannot fulfil the public’s demand.
Those living in remote areas don’t even have libraries in their village schools.
According to the website of Working for Children (WFC), a registered, non-profit charity committed to assisting at-risk children living in rural communities within Siem Reap province, “Most of the rural village schools need libraries. Some schools create makeshift libraries out of an unused classroom, while others keep books in boxes or bags.”
The website also notes that this problem often occurs in recently built schools that need to develop more.
Clearly, schools without a library need one. Even school with libraries rarely have librarians, often because they have only a handful of teachers as it is.
A primary school in my home town has been able to build a nice library with government and NGO support, but students hardly have a chance to access it because the door is usually locked.
The school has hired no librarians and the teachers are all busy, so the school director is forced to act as librarian when he gets a free moment, which is not often.
Having a teacher or school director working as librarian creates another barrier to accessing the library. As they already bear a responsibility to teach or manage the school, they may not want the students to read or borrow books because this creates more work –– sorting, lending and shelving – for them.
Librarians’ knowledge and attitude are also important. They should be friendly and eager to help students find the documents they need.
The opposite was true when I was in high school. I used to be scolded just for asking whether the library had a particular book.
Libraries should also update their documents regularly. This is not a huge issue for primary or high-school students, but students in university must be able to access the latest readings for their research.
In some libraries, most of the books are outdated because most are donated by foreign countries and little money is spent on buying new books. In a bookshop, study materials are always updated because patrons are spending money on them.
Opening hours can also be a limiting factor for student library access. Though some libraries have begun extending librarians’ working hours to attract more readers, others maintain a schedule that conflicts with the students’ classes. So, for example, libraries will shut their doors during lunch breaks and at weekends – the times when students are free to use them.
Some students also complain about regulations requiring them to wear uniforms whenever they enter the library. This poses the question: which is more important, wearing a uniform or gaining knowledge?
Some people go out for the day without planning to go to the library, but if in their free time they suddenly want to go, they will be denied access for lack of a uniform.
Comfort is also essential, and if a library intends to attract patrons, it should, at the very least, have a place where students can sit comfortably, with good lighting and no distracting noise.
LIFT interviewed Dr Ros Chantrabot, a writer as well as acting vice-president of the Royal Academy of Cambodia, about Cambodian literature and literacy.
“I don’t think Cambodian youth do not appreciate reading. The main point is that Cambodians don’t have enough reading resources.”
I think it will take time to change the reading habits of the average Cambodian.
Based on what Ros Chantrabot said, I’d say the first step is to extend the availability of resources by building more school libraries, and improving the facilities of those already in existence.22/06/2011 By: Dara Saoyuth This article was published on LIFT, Issue 76 published on June 22, 2011
Young and Married
Everyone seems to agree that Cambodia needs to modernise in one way or another, so why does the institution of marriage often seem to be the exception?
Cambodia is developing, however, early marriage, which means marriage before the age of 18 is still prevalent in the kingdom.
Sambo Manara, a History professor and deputy director of the History department at the Royal University of Phnom Penh says that early marriage is not just something that happens in the present day. He says that early marriages often happened when there was a need to increase the birth rate, especially during and after war. He gave the example of the post-Khmer Rouge regime period, when a lot of people had lost family members, so they tried to build up their families again by marrying.
Even though there is no more war within the country, 25 percent of women aged 20-24 inCambodiawere married before the age of 18, according to a publication from UNICEF published in 2005. The fear that their husbands might pass away before them is a factor raised by Sambo Manara to answer to the question why there are still couple marriage at young age.
“According to data from World Health Organization in 2009, Cambodian men can live around 58 years, so women think that they have to marriage early; otherwise, their husbands will not have enough time to educate their children, as well as take responsibility in bringing up the family,” said Sambo Manara.
Under the Cambodian Trafficking Law, article 36 says the penalty for anyone convicted of sex with a minor (under 15 years of age) is between five to ten years imprisonment. “From 16 to under 18, they can get married if their parents agree, and if they are over 18, they can marry freely,” says Executive Director of Cambodian Defenders Project Sok Sam Oeun, adding that they can file a complaint to the court if their parents do not allow them to get married once they are over 18.
Even though it is legally possible to get married in your teens, some advocate waiting until you are older.
Khut Khemrin, a doctor and clinical service manager at Marie Stopes International said that most health problems related to early marriage usually concern women. He said “women at the age of 18 years or under18, have organs which are still developing, so it might cause some problems, especially during delivery of a baby if they are pregnant at these ages”.
“One more thing is that Cambodian women, especially those living in countryside don’t have much knowledge regarding reproductive health, so they don’t know how to prevent unwanted baby, and they also don’t know how to take care of their foetus when they pregnant,” said Khut Khemrin.
He suggested that it’s a good idea for young couples to practice birth spacing until they reach the ages of having a safe pregnancy. “They can discuss with each other when they want to get children, so we can introduce them to the variety of ways of contraceptive methods since different methods have different results that can prevent you from having children for 3 years, 5 years or up to 10 years. The choice is yours,” said Khut Khmerin.
Having physical problems is one thing, but another thing is that a couple who marry early can easily break up their relationship or suffer domestic violence.
Chhoun Tray, a vice director at the Department of Psychology at the Royal University of Phnom Penh, said that at these ages people cannot control themselves effectively, so they easily get angry. “Sometimes, people are just angry at an everyday word and that can lead to a break up in a relationship,” said Chhoun Tray.
Ek Monosen, a talk show host for Radio FM 102 and vice rector at Human Resources University, said that the best way to prevent break ups of young couples is not to allow them to marry at young ages because then they don’t have much education and are not yet ready to be a father or mother.
However, he suggested that it can be alright for women to marry at these ages and not have problem in relationship if they choose to marry with a man who is older than her because a woman tends to listen and follow what someone older than her says.
But he said the husband should not be older than his wife than nine years because it will be more difficult if the gap is too much. Ek Monosen said that if a woman marries a husband who is more than 20 years older, it’s hard for them to get on with each other because when a wife wants to go to the cinema, a husband wants to go to pagoda.
Another concern a young couple has to think about before getting married is the future of their children. Sambo Manara said that children of young couples are most likely become dysfunctional because their parents don’t have enough capacity to educate them. “If they marry at the age of 15, 16, or 17, they themselves haven’t finished high school, so how can they use their knowledge to teach their children?,” said Sambo Manara.
Ek Monosen said there are four factors that will affect people’s future: family, social situation, education, and personality. He added that a couple will be happy if the above four elements are in harmony.By: Dara Saoyuth Additional reporting by: Touch Yin Vannith This article was published on LIFT, Issue 71 published on May 18, 2011
Schools Led by Students
Although poor funding is almost certainly the main obstacle standing between Cambodian students and an internationally competitive education, it is certainly not the only thing that needs to be addressed for the Kingdom to start producing world-ready intellectuals. Dara Saoyuth looks at plans turn things around that will put students behind the wheel.
Carrying a green sack on her right shoulder, 7-year-old Chan Eng was opening a rubbish bin along the riverside with a 10-year old boy, looking for empty cans and bottles to sell. Last year she went to a school and studied in grade 1, but three months later, she had to drop out of school because her parents, who work as scavengers, could not afford to pay for her studies. She was asked to scavenge and to make some money to support the family.
She is not the only child in this predicament. About one-third of children in Cambodia aged five to fourteen work, leaving them with less time to concentrate on school, according to a document released in January 2010 by the American Institutes for Research.
In article 48 of the Cambodian Constitution adopted in 1999, it states that “the State shall protect children from acts that are injurious to their educational opportunities,health and welfare”. It is also a government policy to provide children with basic education, from grade 1 to grade 9.
The Child Friendly School, or CFS, is a programme that has been tested and practiced in Cambodia by the Ministry of Education and its development partners in order to implement this policy.
“CFS is a school where educating techniques focus more on children’s rights and all stakeholders have to work together to produce a learning environment that is more friendly to students and to assure them that they can get knowledge, have life skills, have good behaviour and be able to live in society peacefully,”said Mom Meth, a Technical Assistant at the Secondary Department of the Ministry of Education.
The CFS programme is also focused on child centered learning, which means that children take anactive role in their learning and work in a more independent way to discover their potential and uniqueness, while the teachers’ role is to facilitate them.
There are six dimensions in the CFS programme. The first dimension is inclusive education. The second is effective learning; the third,health, safety and child protection;the fourth, gender sensitivity; the fifth, engagement with children,parents and communities; and the sixth, support from educational management structure.
The CFS pilot programme was implemented in 2000 by the Ministry of Education. Some NGOs and development partners such as UNICEF, Save the Children and Kampuchean Action for Primary Education (KAPE) are helping with some primary schools in Cambodia.
Kou Boun Kheang, a Senior Education Program Advisor at Save the Children, said the organisation has supported CFS since 2000, but is mainly focused on the first, second and sixth dimensions that relate to schools seeking out excluded children, effective learning and school management structure.
“We look around so we can clearly find children who are not able to go to school,” Kou Bounkheang said when explaining how they find excluded children. He added that after finding them, his organisation will then make contact with their parents, explain things to them and give a loan or scholarship to the family and children to make sure they can go to school.
Minister of Education Im Sethy officially approved and announced on December 14, 2007, that all schools in the country should implement the Child Friendly School programme.In the Education Sector Plan for 2006-2010 from the ministry,one priority is to initiate CFS in all 24 provinces to build some quality in basic education.
Por Sokhoeun, a director at the Hor Namhong Sangker secondary school in Kampong Cham, said he adopted the CFS programme in March 2010 and has organised classrooms, school environments,teaching and learning techniques based on the CFS programme.
“It’s different from schools that haven’t practiced the programme because here, students are mobile from one room to another according to the subjects they are studying, unlike in previous times when they had to sit in one room for all subjects,”said Por Sokhoeun. He added that this has improved the quality of education because both the students and teachers can find all the equipment they need for each subject.
Por Sokhoeun gave, as an example,a geography class where there are maps, globes, pictures and tools related to the subject of geography, so students feel they are sitting in a room full of knowledge and they can absorb as much as they want.
No matter how good the programme is, it has not yet reached all schools in the Kingdom, especially for secondary education.
Liesbeth Roolvink, a Basic Education Advisor at World Education,said: “Officially the policy refers to CFS as a policy for basic education. However, the strong focus has been on primary schools and only a small number of pilot schools in lower secondary have applied the policy so far.”
She also acknowledged that the number is expanding and mentioned the project she is working on, Improved Basic Education in Cambodia(IBEC), is being implemented in 101 secondary schools in Kampong Cham, Kratie and Siem reap,and Care International is supporting it in lower secondary schools in Ratanakiri.
“For some schools that never received support in the process of adopting CFS, this may be a little difficult and therefore, they have decided to make three different development stages, basic, medium and advanced,” said Liesbeth Roolvink. “The basic level has a small number of very basic CFS requirements that schools are expected to do and this should be possible with the use of programme based budget and guidance of district technical monitoring teams.Once schools have the basic requirements in place and successfully implemented, they will move up to the next development level and for this level, there are new and more activities that must be implemented,”she explained.
Chum Sophea, director of the primary education department at the ministry of education, agreed that the level of practicing CFS is not the same for all schools based on the resources each school has.
“In some primary schools, there are only classes from grade 1 to grade 2 or 3 with a few teachers, so practicing CFS cannot be the sameas other schools that have enough resources,” said Chum Sophea, who added that the ministry plans to build more rooms and provide more teachers for schools that don’t haveclasses from grade 1 to 6 and lack teachers, so every school can develop their level of the CFS proagramme.
“Now we have 6,767 primary schools across the country and we plan to build around 400 more this year, so with 95-96 percent of children in school presently, there will be no Cambodian children that are out of school in 2015.”
By: Dara Saoyuth This article was publish on LIFT, Issue 65 published on April 06, 2011
Is the Sam Rainsy Party’s candle burning out?
People are sitting in a room looking at a large TV screen. They are watching a person on the screen and if they want to speak, they have to get out of their seats and go to a desk and talk in a microphone so that the person on the screen can hear and respond. This is the method employed by Sam Rainsy Party members to communicate with their leader, Sam Rainsy, who is now living in self-exile in France.
Sam Rainsy was convicted in January 2010 of destroying public property and racial incitement with Vietnam by pulling up border posts along the Vietnamese border in Svay Rieng province in 2009. On March 1, 2011, Cambodia’s Supreme Court rejected his appeal and his sentence of two years in jail still stands.
“The court is used as a political tool to shut Sam Rainsy’s mouth or eliminate him from the political arena since he is the leader of the opposition party,” said Yim Sovann, a spokesman for the Sam Rainsy Party.
On the other hand, Cheam Yeap, a senior Cambodian People’s Party lawmaker, said the ruling party did not order Sam Rainsy to remove the border posts. “Our country has law, so Sam Rainsy has to face court because of his wrongdoing, and if one day in the future I do something wrong, of course, I will face the court as well,” said Cheam Yeap.
A press release issued on February 22 by the Cambodian Center for Human Rights stated “the convictions against Sam Rainsy may leave the country’s largest opposition party without a leader at the next general election”.
Sam Rainsy fled the country in early 2009 and will serve 12 years in jail if he returns to Cambodia because in a separate case, the Phnom Penh Municipal Court sentenced him to an additional 10 years in jail on charges of forging public documents and disinformation after convicting him of disinformation and falsifying public documents.
The executive director of the Khmer Institute of Democracy (KID) in Cambodia, Hang Chhaya, said what has concerned him is that Cambodia is a democratic country, so Sam Rainsy’s case should not have reached the level of removing his parliamentary immunity and sentencing him since he had rights as a politician. “What the ruling party want is to make a good leader who people see, love and support, have to stay abroad as long as possible,” said Hang Chhaya.
While Prime Minister Hun Sen can stand and talk to CPP members and his supporters directly, Sam Rainsy needs support from technology to be able to communicate with SRP members and supporters.
However, Yim Sovann said the fact that Sam Rainsy is not in Cambodia is not a problem for the party. “If you want to meet the party leader, we can make a phone call or video conference that you can see the picture and there is no difference in communication by having or not having him present,” said Yim Sovann, adding that Sam Rainsy is still the party leader who leads meetings and keeps communicating between all levels of leaders and members.
To gain more support in the upcoming election, the HRP and SRP have been working on merging the two parties. After the 2008 national election, on January 15, 2009, Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha singed on a joined declaration officially establishing the Democratic Movement for Change. Since then the alliance has not reached 100 percent agreement and recently each party created a working group of five people to discuss the merger.
Mu Sochua, a SRP lawmaker and one of the five people in a merger group on the SRP side, said some conflict of ideas and misunderstandings from the past were the reasons for slowing the merger. However, she said she believed it would be successful soon. “We are democratic people and we have the same goal,” Mu Sochua said.
Mu Sochua said she was sure of success in the next election when the alliance reaches full agreement. She gave as an example Kampot province, where the SRP needs about 10,000 votes more to get one more parliament seat, however the HRU gets more than 14,000 votes. “Because we were not united at that time, about 14,000 votes were useless because none of us got any seats from there,” she said.
“Previously, we didn’t work well on the merger, but now we have a clear objective and we have clear steps to take,” Keat Sukun, a coordinator in merger group on the HRP side, said. He added that both sides had recently found common ground for a lasting unification of the parties.
Keat Sukun said that in Cambodia, each party cannot do everything alone and unification is very important in terms of exchanging human resources.
“It is the right decision to join as an alliance,” said Phnom Penh-based political analyst Chea Vannath, who explained that the seat allocation formula in Cambodia makes small political parties waste a lot of votes if they are not united.
However, she said she is not sure if this unification can last much longer because based on her observations, it would be easy to break up.
“To unite successfully, it’s very important to have trust building between the two parties, as wife and husband do,” said Chea Vannath. “We have to think that there will be a lot of obstacles with each step we take, and if we can trust each other, this unification will last forever.”
“While the frog tries harder, the snake also tries harder,” said Cheam Yeap, explaining that the ruling party was also working harder. Cheam Yeap said the ruling party did not fear the union of opposition parties.
However, Cheam Yeap said: “All CPP members are not advised to ride a horse with a free hand.” He added that they are not just sitting there happy with their victory, but they are working to keep it.
By: Dara SaoyuthAdditional reporting by Sok Eng This article was publish on LIFT, Issue 61 published on March 09, 2011
Can Cambodian TV news be trusted?
According to a census taken of Cambodia’s population in 2008, 58.41 percent of households own at least one television set. News programmes are what every station cannot do without. Cambodia’s television stations present a variety of both national and international news to their audiences and also produce some other programmes including live reports and news analysis.
Huot Kheangveng, the deputy general director of the Bayon station which is owned by Prime Minister Hun Sen’s daughter, said his station tries to cater to its audience’s needs, adding that the audience likes news which impacts their lives and is a bridge between the government and the people.
Pen Samithy, the president of the Club of Cambodian Journalists and editor of the Raksmey Kampuchea newspaper, said that developing a variety of news for television was good for the people and the country as a whole since people can learn what’s happening around them. He said, however, there were not very many local television programmes and they were not updated.
Information Minister and Government Spokesman Khieu Kanharith said making shows for TV is a big expense, and added that just to get a good camera like the ones being used at TVK costs about $30,000 to $40,000.
He said that privately-owned television stations have to make money, so they are not able to have lots of people capturing the news from all over the country.
“Most of the news focuses on the government’s achievements and is positive,” said Pen Samithy. “I just want all the news that impacts the people.”
Lift conducted a survey of 100 university students in Phnom Penh and the results showed that 65 percent said the news is biased towards the government.
However, Huot Kheangveng said his television station carried both the positive and negative points of the government to let people know about its achievements and also to constructively criticise government.
“We have references, real sources and our reporters do it professionally. We disseminate the truth only,” he said.
Launched in March 2003, the Cambodian Television Network, or CTN, is the most popular station in Cambodia and is now broadcasting news for seven hours each day. Its programmes include the morning news, which has been running for the past year.
“Any bad news has already been reported by some radio stations and newspapers, so we don’t have to follow because it’s not good,” said Som Chhaya, CTN’s deputy director general and news editor, explaining that the market for news is very small and they cannot survive on news shows alone.
“As you can see, some newspapers are still printed in black and white and have not changed to colour printing like the others.”
Som Chhaya also said there are some obstacles he and his crews face in getting news. Getting information is sometimes difficult for him because some departments and ministries don’t have any spokesperson, so he has to try to contact other relevant sources who sometimes cannot be reached.
Now most television stations produce news programmes and analysis, which Som Chhaya
compares with having a meal that is delicious after adding the seasoning, more meat and more vegetables, meaning that news analysis provides more detail for the audience to better understand a situation.
Soy Sopheap, a news analyst at Bayon TV, said he always recaps and analyses the important news of the week, but acknowledged that “it’s not correct all the time, but we say what is true and adhere to our profession as journalists”.
However, Khieu Kanharith stressed that news analysis is not news but opinion.
“They have the freedom to express their opinions,” he said, adding that some people are not very professional in their analysis, but the majority of them are.By: Dara Saoyuth & Sun Narin
This article was publish on LIFT, Issue 53 published on January 12, 2010
ការទទួលបានទឹកស្អាត និង ទឹកដែលមានសុវត្ថិភាពនៅកម្ពុជា
Accessing to Clean and Safe water in Cambodia by saoyuth
Cue: ទឹកជាប្រភពដ៏សំខាន់សម្រាប់ជីវិត។ យ៉ាងណាមិញ ប្រជាពល រដ្ឋកម្ពុជា នៅតាម ទីជនបទ ប្រមាណ តែជាង៤២ភាគរយប៉ុណ្ណោះ ដែលអាចទទួលបានទឹកស្អាតសម្រាប់បរិភោគ និងប្រើប្រាស់ នេះបើតាមរបាយការណ៍ជំរឿនរបស់ក្រសួងផែនការកាលពីឆ្នាំ២០០៨។ ក្រៅពីនោះ ប្រជាពលរដ្ឋកម្ពុជានៅតាមទីជនបទនៅតែបន្តប្រើប្រាស់ប្រភពទឹកដែលខ្វះអនាម័យនិង ទឹកដែលមានសារធាតុអាសេនិចដែលភាគច្រើនត្រូវបានគេរកឃើញនៅក្នុងទឹកអណ្តូង។ តារា សៅយុត្តិ ធ្វើសេចក្តីរាយការណ៍៖
Intro: សម្រាប់អ្នកដែលរស់នៅតាមទីក្រុង ឫទីប្រជុំជន ពួកគាត់មានលទ្ធភាពទទួលបានទឹកស្អាត ប្រើប្រាស់ ខណៈពេលដែល ប្រជាជនភាគច្រើននៅតាមទីជនបទនៅតែបន្តប្រើប្រាស់ទឹកដែលបានមកពីប្រភពផ្សេងៗរួមមាន អណ្តូង ទន្លេ និង ទឹកភ្លៀង ជាដើម។ មិនត្រឹមតែប៉ុណ្ណោះ ប្រជាជនមួយចំនួននៅតែបន្តបរិភោគទឹកឆៅ រឺទឹកដែលគ្មានអនាម័យ ជាហេតុនាំអោយ ពួកគាត់ងាយកើតមាននូវជំងឺរាគរូស អាសន្នរោគ និង ជំងឺដទៃទៀត។
Track 01: លោក ម៉ៅ សារាយ ប្រធាននាយកដ្ឋានផ្គត់ផ្គង់ទឹកនៅតាមទីជនបទ បានលើកឡើងថាប្រជាជននៅតាមជនបទភាគច្រើន យល់ដឹងពីការប្រើប្រាស់ទឹកស្អាតនៅមានកម្រិត។
Clip 01: ប្រជាពលរដ្ជយើងនៅមានការយល់ដឹងទាប នៅឡើយ ថាតើទឹកស្អាតវាយ៉ាង ម៉េច ហូបទឹកស្អាតទៅវាផ្តល់សុខភាពល្អយ៉ាងម៉េច ហូបទឹកមិនស្អាតទៅវាប៉ះពាល់យ៉ាងម៉េច គាត់នៅមានការយល់ដឺងតិចតួច អាហ្នឹងវាជាបញ្ហាសំខាន់ដែលយើងត្រូវដោះស្រាយ ។
Track 02: កន្លងមក រាជរដ្ឋាភិបាល ក៏ដូចជាអង្គការក្រៅរដ្ឋាភិបាល បានធ្វើការអប់រំទៅដល់ប្រជាពលរដ្ឋ ទាក់ទងនឹងការប្រើប្រាស់ទឹកស្អាតសម្រាប់ជីវិតរស់នៅប្រចាំថ្ងៃរបស់ពួកគាត់។ អង្គការមួយចំនួនដូចជា IDE, RDI, និងUnicef ក៏បានផលិតនូវឧបករណ៏ ចំរោះទឹកស្អាតដើម្បីចែកចាយនិងលក់ជូនដល់ប្រជាជនកម្ពុជា ក្នុងគោលបំណងធ្វើយ៉ាងណាឱ្យប្រជាពលរដ្ឋទទួលបានទឹកស្អាតប្រើប្រាស់ទូលំទូលាយជាងមុន។
Track ៣: តាមការបញ្ជាក់របស់លោក លុយ ចន្ទ្រា ប្រធានផ្នែកលក់ឧបករណ៍ចម្រោះទឹកស្អាតរូបទន្សាយ របស់អង្គការIDEបានឱ្យដឹងថាធុងចម្រោះទឹករបស់អង្គការលោកអាចចម្រោះមេរោគរហូតដល់៩៩.៩៩ភាគរយ ដោយសារតែវាធ្វើឡើងពីដីឥដ្ឋដុត និងមានលាបសារធាតុជាតិប្រាក់សម្រាប់ច្រោះយកមេរោគតូចៗ។
Track ៤: ទោះបីជាយ៉ាងនេះក្តីប្រជាជនមួយចំនួននៅតែមិនទាន់បានប្រើប្រាស់ឧបករណ៍ចម្រោះទឹកស្អាត ហើយនៅតែបន្តទទូលទានទឹកដោយមិនបានដាំពុះនៅឡើយ ដោយមូលហេតុត្រូវបានលោក លុយ ចន្ទ្រា លើកឡើងយ៉ាងដូច្នេះថាៈ
Clip ២: ក៏ប៉ុន្តែភាគធំ ដែលយើងដឹងប្រជាពលរដ្ឋយើងគាត់នៅមានការរឹងទទឹង ដូចថាគាត់ញ៉ាំតែទឹកភ្លៀងមួយជីវិតគាត់ហើយមិនដែលកើតអី តែធាតុពិតគាត់មិនដឹងថាមានអ្វីកើតឡើងនៅក្នុងពោះ របស់គាត់នោះទេ។ ទឹកស្អាត ដែលអាចញ៉ាំបានមានសុវត្ថិភាពគឺជាទឹកដែលដាំ និងទឺកដែលចម្រោះ។
Track ៥: ជាមួយគ្នានោះដែរបញ្ហាទឹកដែលមានជាតិអាសេនិច ក៏ជាបញ្ហាចម្បងមួយសម្រាប់ប្រជាជនកម្ពុជា ដែលរស់នៅតាមបណ្តោយដងទន្លេមេគង្គ ក៏ព្រោះតែពួកគាត់ជឿជាក់ថាការប្រើប្រាស់ទឹក ក្នុងដីមានសុវត្ថិភាព។
Track ៦: គួរបញ្ជាក់ផងដែរថា នៅក្នុងឆ្នាំ២០០១ សារធាតុអាសេនិចត្រូវបានគេរកឃើញថាមាន នៅក្នុងប្រទេសកម្ពុជា។ អាសេនិច ជាសារធាតុគីមីម្យ៉ាងកើតឡើងពីធម្មជាតិ ហើយវាស្ថិតក្នុង ទឹក ដី ខ្យល់ ថ្ម រុក្ខជាតិ និង សត្វ។ នៅពេលដែលសារធាតុអាសេនិចចូលទៅក្នុងខ្លួនមនុស្សចាប់ពីរយៈពេល ៣ ទៅ១០ ឆ្នាំ នោះពួកគាត់មានអាការៈដូចជា ជំងឺសើស្បែកនៅលើដងខ្លួន បាតដៃ បាតជើង ឈឺពោះ ក្អួតចង្អោរ រាគ ជំងឺស្ពឹកដៃជើង រោគខ្វិន មួយចំនួនអាចទៅជាខ្វាក់ភ្នែក ហើយវាអាចនឹងវិវត្តទៅជា ជំងឺមហារីកផ្សេងៗ។
Track ៧: តាមការសិក្សារបស់ក្រសួងអភិវឌ្ឍជនបទ និង អង្គការUNICEF ទៅលើ អណ្តូងទឹកចំនួន១៦០០០ នៅតាមបណ្តាខេត្តជុំវិញទន្លេមេគង្គ និងទន្លេបាសាក់បានរកឃើញថា មានខេត្តចំនួន៧ដែលមានសារជាតិអាសេនិច ក្នុងនោះរួមមាន ខេត្តកណ្តាល ព្រៃវែង កំពង់ចាម កំពង់ធំ កំពង់ឆ្នាំង បៃលិន និងក្រចេះ។
Track ៨: ចេញពីកំពង់ចំលងសំបួរឆ្ពោះមកកាន់ភូមិ ព្រែកឬស្សី ឃុំកំពង់កុង ស្រុកកោះធំ ខេត្តកណ្តាល ជាកន្លែងមួយដែលមានប្រជាជនប្រមាណជា២០០ គ្រួសាររងគ្រោះដោយសារសារជាតិអាសេនិច។ ពួកគាត់បានបរិភោគទឹកដោយមិនដឹងថាមានវត្តមានសារជាតិអាសេនិចអស់រយះ ពេលជាង ១០ឆ្នាំមកហើយ។
Track ៩: ឆៃលី សុខា មានបងប្រុស២នាក់បានស្លាប់កាលពីឆ្នាំ២០០៦ដោយសារជម្ងឺមហារីក ដែលបង្កមកពីសារធាតុអាសេនិច។ សព្វថ្ងៃនាងនិងសមាជិកគ្រួសារចំនួន៣នាក់ទៀត កំពុងរស់នៅដោយមានជម្ងឺសើស្បែក ដោយសារតែសារធាតុអាសេនិចដែលមាននៅក្នុងខ្លួនរបស់ពួកគាត់។
Clip ៣: មានអារម្មណ៏ថា ស្តាយខ្លួនមិនគួរណាផឹកទឹកហ្នឹង ព្រោះកាលហ្នឹងគេថាទឹកហ្នឹងអនាមយ័ ហើយយើងអត់ដឹង យើងចេះតែផឹកទៅ ដល់ពេលទើបតែដឹងឥឡូវ វាកើតរួចហើយ វាហួសពេលហើយ។
Track ១០: បច្ចុប្បន្ននេះ គ្រួសាររបស់ឆៃលី សុខា បានឈប់បរិភោគទឹកអណ្តូង ហើយងាកមកប្រើទឹកទន្លេជំនួសវិញ។
Track ១១: ឆាង វឿន អាយុ៤០ឆ្នាំ ក៏បានបាត់បង់ឪពុក និង បងប្រុសម្នាក់កាលពីឆ្នាំ ២០១០ កន្លងទៅ ដោយសារតែពួកគាត់ទាំងពីរ បានកើតនូវជំងឹមហារីកជើងដែលបណ្តាលមក ពីផឹកទឹកដែលមានសារធាតុអាសេនិច។ គាត់បាននិយាយថា ឪពុក និងបងប្រុសគាត់ត្រូវបានកាត់ជើងចោលទាំងពីរដើម្បីទប់ស្កាត់ជំងឺមហារីកនោះ ប៉ុន្តែពួកគាត់មិនអាច ជាសះស្បើយបានឡើយ។ បច្ចុប្បន្នមានសមាជិក៤នាក់នៅក្នុងគ្រួសាររបស់គាត់ ដែលកំពុង ផ្ទុកនូវសារធាតុអាសេនិចនៅក្នុងខ្លួន។
Track ១២: ដោយសារតែអាសេនិច ជាសារធាតុគីមីដែលមិនអាចសម្លាប់បានដោយគ្រាន់តែដាំទឹកឱ្យពុះនោះ ប្រព័ន្ធចម្រោះសារជាតិអាសេនិក ត្រូវបានបង្កើតឡើងក្នុងឆ្នាំ២០០៦ ដោយវិទ្យាស្ថានបច្ចេកវិជ្ជាកម្ពុជា។ លោកអ៊ុយ ដាវីន អ្នកសម្របសម្រួលខាងការស្រាវជ្រាវនិងអភិវឌ្ឍន៍នៃវិទ្យាស្ថាន បច្ចេកវិជ្ជាកម្ពុជាបានរៀបរាប់អំពីអត្ថប្រយោជន៍របស់ប្រព័ន្ធនេះយ៉ាងដូច្នេះថាៈ
Clip ០៤: ប្រព័ន្ធរបស់យើងក្រៅពីចម្រោះទឹកក្រៅពីជាតិអាសេនិច វាអាចចម្រោះបានម៉ង់ការណែស ហ្លុយអររ៉ាយ និងដកមេរោគទៀតដើម្បីធ្វើឱ្យទឹករបស់យើងវាស្ថិតនៅក្នុង ស្តង់ដាររបស់អង្គការសុខភាពពិភពលោក។
Track ១៣: ប្រព័ន្ធនេះត្រូវបានដាក់ឱ្យប្រើប្រាស់សាកល្បងនៅក្នុងខេត្តព្រៃវែងនិងស្រុកកៀនស្វាយអស់រយៈពេលពីរឆ្នាំមកហើយ ហើយលោកអ៊ុយ ដាវីន សង្កេតឃើញថាប្រព័ន្ធនេះទទួលបានជោគជ័យក្នុងការចម្រោះសារធាតុអាសេនិចបាន១០០%។
Track ១៤: បើទោះបីជាយ៉ាងនេះក្តីប្រព័ន្ធនេះមិនត្រូវបានតំឡើងនៅគ្រប់តំបន់ដែលរងផលប៉ះពាល់ដោយសារធាតុអាសេនិចនៅឡើយទេ។ បើតាមប្រសាសន៍របស់លោក អ៊ុយ ដាវីន ប្រព័ន្ធចម្រោះមួយត្រូវចំណាយថវិកាពី២៥០០ដុល្លាសហរដ្ឋអាមេរិច ដល់៤០០០ដុល្លាសហរដ្ឋអាមេរិចហើយខាងវិទ្យាស្ថានមិនមាន ថវិកាផ្ទាល់ខ្លួនសម្រាប់គម្រោងនេះទេ ហេតុនេះវិទ្យាស្ថាន អនុវត្តទៅតាមកញ្ជប់ថវិកាដែលមាន។
Clip ៥: ខ្ញុំមានលុយមួយភូមិ ខ្ញុំធ្វើមួយភូមិ ខ្ញុំធ្វើម្តងមួយម្តងមួយអ្វីដែលខ្ញុំអាចធ្វើបាន ព្រោះអីបញ្ហាអាសេនិចនៅក្នុងប្រទេសកម្ពុជា មនុស្សភាគច្រើនបានតែនិយាយ ប៉ុន្តែការជួយដល់ប្រជាជន គេមិនជួយទេ គេជួយបានត្រឹមចំណេះដឹង ក៏ប៉ុន្តែប្រជាជនអត់ទឹកនៅតែផឹកទឹកអណ្តូងដដែល ដូច្នេះការប៉ះពាល់មកលើសុខភាពនៅតែមាន។
Track ១៥: លោកអ៊ុយ ដាវីន លើកឡើងថាយើងត្រូវតែប្រញាប់ដោះស្រាយបញ្ហាអាសេនិកនេះ ហើយលោកបន្តទៀតថាដើម្បីឱ្យប្រព័ន្ធមានស្ថិរភាពលោកមិនអាចផ្តល់ទឹកដែលចម្រោះរួចដោយឥតគិតថ្លៃទៅដល់ប្រជាពលរដ្ឋទេ។
Clip ៦: យើងត្រូវលក់វា តែលក់ក្នុងតម្លៃមួយដែលប្រជាជនអាចទទួលយកបាន ដូចជាទឹកផឹកពី២០ទៅ៣០លីត្រ យើងលក់ក្នុងតម្លៃ១០០រៀល ដោយ៥០សម្រាប់ជួសជុលប្រព័ន្ធ និង៥០ទៀតសម្រាប់អ្នកគ្រប់គ្រងប្រព័ន្ធ ដូច្នេះយើងធ្វើឱ្យប្រព័ន្ធដំណើរការដោយមិនមានបញ្ហា។
Track ១៦: តាមប្រសាសន៍របស់លោកម៉ៅសារាយ ក្រសួងអភិវឌ្ឍន៍ជនបទមានផែនការធ្វើយ៉ាងណាផ្តល់ទឹកស្អាតទៅដល់ប្រជាជននៅតាមទីជនបទឱ្យបាន៥០%នៅឆ្នាំ២០១៥ខាងមុខនេះ និងសម្រេចឱ្យបាន១០០%នៅក្នុងឆ្នាំ២០២៥។By: Dara Saoyuth & Vorn Makara Cue by Vorn Makara & Present by Dara Saoyuth 12/01/2010