Blessings to Land Measuring Mission in 2013

First, allow my wife and I to express our warmest welcome for mothers, aunties, sisters, and grandmothers of the late youth-volunteer Chan Maradi. We also are gratefully welcoming the presence of everyone who have taken time to participate in this wonderful night. I would like to take this opportunity on behalf of the Royal Government, my wife and myself to wish you all four Buddhist blessings for the New Year 2013.

I may remind you that our meeting today is coinciding with the ending of 2012 and the coming of 2013. It is six days into the 2013 already in fact. Tomorrow will be January 7, which is going to be the 34th anniversary (7 January 1979/2013) of the victory day over the genocide and the country’s rebirth. Another coincidence is that yesterday was the 37th anniversary of my marriage or 13,506 days of sharing life together. That is not pre-planned. It is purely a coincidence.

Thanks to State and Tertiary Education Institutions

You already have the report of Senior Minister HE Im Chhun Lim and Mr. Hun Manit on our work and gathering today. However, I would like to add further that today we have only finished the first stage of what we are planning to do. We have more work to carry on. Since some of the youth-volunteers have to come back to continue their studies, we need to get a new group of youth volunteers ready to take over the job until we finish the task.

Taking this opportune moment, I would like to express my gratefulness and sincere appreciation to the national institutions – the Senate, the National Assembly, the Royal Government and its peripheral institutions – for the efforts made in this historic joint mission in “taking new action based on existing policies,” in area of land ownership and title. (It for the effectiveness of the work done) I have taken up the position of commander-in-chief (of the whole mission) and Senior Minister HE Im Chhun Lim is my chief of staff.

In this moment I would like to express my sincere appreciation to concerned Ministries – Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction; Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries; Environment; Economy and Finance; Health; Education; Interior – and the Commanders of the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces; the National Police; the Military Police; the Cambodian Mines Action Centre for their supports to this great mission. We also count on the active support of the Ministry of Economy and Finance in providing in a timely manner possibility to acquire measuring tools and equipments. It goes without saying too that the Ministry of Health has been providing great help as far as the healthcare of our cadastre officials and youth-student volunteers are concerned.

The assistance in term of transport means provided by the Ministry of Interior, the helps by the intervention force of the national police, the sub-national level administration, and the Ministry of National Defense, have been very effective. The Ministry of Education also plays a noticeable role in coordinating with the tertiary education institutions with regard to the youth-student volunteers’ break from their studies. The armed forces of all kinds have been contributing in providing safety, security from the time of leaving the city of Phnom Penh to the destinations and their areas of activity. The Cambodian Mines Action Centre of CMAC also performs effective duty in taking inspection on mines and UXOs in areas of operation to evade cadastre officials and youth-student volunteers from accidents.

I would take this moment to express my grateful appreciation to the Cambodian Red Cross for playing an active role in this endeavor too. My good wife, in her capacity as head of the Cambodian Red Cross, has done her part to help me getting the job fulfilled. She has been the one behind all logistic planning and operations. She has everything thought through and sorted out for the youth-student volunteers and those involved in the missions from head to toe. She also keeps constant phone contact with them, which has allowed us to learn more of their problems while performing their duties in the fields.

I thank every tertiary education institution – both state and private – for creating opportunity for our students to take up this duty of measuring land for the people. This has indeed allowed them the possibility to get on to the job in practicum. They allowed those youth-student volunteers to take a break from school for this mission. I also thank all hospitals and medical teams for providing urgent care for emergent cases for both cadastre officials as well as for the youth-student volunteers.

Thanks to  Sub-National Level Institutions, Generous Fellows and Companies

To carry on I would like to say a few things to the sub-national institutions of all levels – provincial, district, communal and village as well as the armed forces, CMAC, the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces’ military engineering team, whose common efforts help fulfill this huge local mission possible and effective. While thanking the provincial councils, the governors of the provinces and districts as well as commune and local levels, I also stress on effective protection arrangement for safety of the cadastre officials and the youth-student volunteers. The CMAC and RCAF Military Engineering Teams with regard to the removal of mines and UXOs have fulfilled their tasks in a fully experienced way. I thank also generous fellows for taking their time and resources to visit the cadastre officials and the youth-student volunteers in the field.

Members of the Senate, the National Assembly and the Royal Government have also traveling from one place to another in their support actions. That has become a great source of encouragement and motivation for the cadastre officials and youth-student volunteers to go on fulfilling their tasks. In general, the people who carry out the mission are not lonely. They have frequent visits from generous fellows from time to time, which, as I said, is a great source of inspiration and encouragement not only for the cadastre officials and youth-student volunteers but also for my wife and I who have taken responsibility of the historic mission.

I thank the Metphone telecommunication company for providing the mission with over 5,000 four-digit phone number and services for this operation. This service has allowed our mission teams – experts as well as youth-student volunteers – to communicate with each other in time for whatever issue they need to consult or advise one another. I thank the CP Group for providing eggs from the start for the mission teams. The Angkor Beer company also provides refreshments in the fields as well as in our party today. The Cambodia Beer company also did the same. The dringking water Vital also provides water for our mission teams as well. I am grateful for that. The Kong Hong garment company also provides the mission with various materials relating to the need of our youth-student volunteers. I have great thanks also for HE Sat Sami and Sat Samut for providing the solar-energizing lighting system for those teams far away from energy sources.

Thanks to Political Parties, NGOs, Media, Buddhist Monks and People

I would like to take this opportune moment also to express my sincere thanks for political parties and non-governmental organizations for the supports they have provided to the Royal Government in taking new action based on the existing policies with regard to land ownership and title issue. I must say that the Cambodian People’s Party and the Funcinpec Party have played significant roles in providing supports to the Royal Government’s activities. I also thank the non-governmental organizations, which include the youth association, who pay attention and support to the mission.

I also appreciate the media for their active participations in making this historic mission of land measuring and titling a hot topic and attraction. The national TVK, CNV TV Channel and Bayon TV station have been the leading media in covering news on the mission. Their news and reports have constantly informed parents of youth-student volunteers as well as the public of what is going on with their kids or spouses. They even spent a great deal of time to visit the mission teams in the field. There are other media doing more or less the same but I cannot mention them all.

I take this opportunity to express my sincere thanks to the Buddhist monks, our people in the whole Kingdom of Cambodia, in places where land measuring and titling is going on for paying great attention and deeper interest in the whole country for this first of its kind mission in the Kingdom of Cambodia. For those of Buddhist monks and people in the mission areas, I specifically thank them for the support kindly offered to our youth-student volunteers while they are living and working in their community.

The close relations between the people and our cadastre officials and youth-student volunteers, especially when the locals are looking after the youth-student volunteers as own children, have assured confidence that their kids or spouses are in good hands. I also take this opportune moment to express once again my apology and beg for forgiveness if these kids and nephews might have committed mistakes intentionally and unintentionally.

Thanks to Those Involved in the Mission

I am taking this occasion to speak to the officials involved in the mission, ranging from the cadastre, forest administration, environment, CMAC, medical, drivers, engineering teams, the armed forces to local authorities of my sincere thanks and appreciation for their concerted efforts. I also thank everyone who shares their skill and knowledge with the youth-student volunteers in the mission to measure land and issue land title. I am glad that they could be complimentary to one another. The sharing of knowledge and expertise has allowed the youth-student volunteers to have a better chance in taking recruitment exam for cadastre officials, whose result will come out tomorrow.

I also have the necessity to thank for all supports given so far from the forest administration and environment for the cutting out of certain land size from the forest coverage areas where land issues have involved them. If I remember well, we have issued both sub-decrees and decrees of nearly 200 already. For that matter, I would like the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction and the Council of Ministers to post them as much as they can on their websites to inform to the public of the huge achievements scored jointly between the Royal Government and the youth volunteers.

According to the report of HE Im Chhun Lim, so far we have measured 340,000 land parcels, which is equal to 550,000 hectares. We will continue with a speedy manner in the phase II mission. As far as this land measuring and titling job is concerned, we have used roughly a brigade of forces. The youth-student volunteers have taken active measures to strengthen their responsibility and take actions in various target areas.

Thanks to Youth Associations

I would like to take this occasion to express my condolence over the death of the brave nephew Chan Maradi who has become a heroic youth in the land measuring and titling mission. Today we have the presence of his mother, grandmother, aunty here too. I think that if it is true that there is this soul after one’s death, Chan Maradi’s soul could still be with us today and bestow us with success for what we are trying to do for the people. Therefore I would express my sincere thanks and appreciation for the parents, supervisors, spouses and children of the youth volunteers for allowing their sons, daughters, grandson and granddaughters, spouses to take up this mission.

Besides, I thank their classmates and professors who always stay as a source of encouragement for them. I thank the Kolbot Khmer team who has been working hard and effectively so far. I am so proud that the youth – which includes the Kolbot Khmer, the Union of Cambodian Youth Federation, the Student Association, the Buddhist Intellectuals, Federation of Democratic Intellectual Students or K 22 – has been taking responsibility in the historic mission this time. The Cambodian People’s Party Activists in various tertiary institutions in Phnom Penh with their abbreviated name K 77 and the Cambodian Muslim Student have also actively participated in the mission.

Four Heartfelt Words

My wife and I reserve for you – the youth-student volunteers – today four words, which are we are fondness, love, commiseration and respect for you. By fondness, I am talking about your sacrifices and actions for the sake of our country and people. It is not at all a coincidence. Your actions are marked as high responsibility and the subject that we are fond of very much. This has created pride by which the youth-student volunteers have become a model for other youths who could be on a wrong path in the society.

We love you because you all are nice young men and women in addition to your capability to understand the people’s hardship. Discipline, capacity, responsibility and solidarity – all of them have assured you love and satisfaction from people in the leadership, people in the local areas, your peers and concerned institutions. My wife and I are also satisfying with your actions too. By giving regard, I mean that your sacrifice has a great value to the people. You left the family at the time when the weather condition was unfavorable, an act you never did it before.

This has reminded me the experience when I was 18 years of age and had to part my family to live in the forest. Even though we have thought through and sorted out everything for you from head to toe, still mission under rain, wind and sun heat and traveling across forest and rivers have brought back pictures from the old days and put you all in our commiseration. Despite all this let me take out a philosophy with you that “the harder the job to fulfill, the more prideful it gets.” The 7 January victory is one example. You may have remembered what I said in the beginning that of the job is easy there would not be a need for me to call on your help.

If the toppling of the Pol Pot group on 7 January 1979 were easy, it would be meaningless and valueless for us to keep remembering it. It is because Pol Pot killed people and we traded our own lives to liberate the country and people that the victory is ever meaningful.

The last of the four words – respect, that my wife and I consider and highly respect your heroism which is obvious in the eyes of our people, who have benefited from the implementation of new action based on existing policies. It will be unforgettable. My wife, you may refer to her as aunty, always think of you. She has worked with HE Hun Heng, who is not here today, to compose a song “Dad and Mom Are Always by Your Side” to link up the feeling between my wife as well as those parents and supervisors with those who fulfill the missions. I would take this opportunity to express my sincere thanks to the youth-student volunteers for composing many songs in return.

Phase II Mission Breaks in June 2013

On this auspicious occasion, I would like to express my sincere thanks and support for the land measuring and titling mission. I solemnly clarify that “we will not leave if we have not finished the job.” Once we finish the measuring stage, we will speed up the social land concession for the people too. As far as this mission phase II is concerned, if we have not yet finished it by the time of the electoral campaign we will have a break to avoid political intriguing accusation from various circles. It is in this note that the second phase mission will be coming to its breakpoint in June, right before the start of electoral campaign. Once we finish measuring the size of 1.8 million or even two million hectares of land for people of close to 500,000 families, we will speed up social land concession for people who do not have land.

We need more cadastre officials. As a first step, we allow the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction to recruit 600 of them who after taking the recruitment exam will know the results tomorrow. Since we have up to 1,603 and we will recruit at this stage only 600 new staff, there will certainly be those who fail. I am looking for your understanding in this matter too. I hope that you will find jobs in other fields – state or private. Today my wife and I have brought with us small token of appreciation for 4,666 people – who are the youth volunteers, cadastre officials, drivers, military officials, medical staff, etc. of 100 USD for each of you./.