Uphold Justice: Big Penalty for Police Who Rape

Published on Friday, December 29, 2006
Letter to the Editor

Though public servants are elected and delegated to serve and protect the people’s interest, in most cases in Cambodia public servants work for their own interest, not for the people. This contradicts the univer sal slogan of “Government of the people, for the people, and by the people.” In Cambodia, we may say “Government of the party, for its officials, and by the people.” This is demonstrated in the case of the 12-year-old Siem Reap province girl who was allegedly raped by three police officers at their commune post. There seems no real commitment from either the provincial police or the court to perform their roles to bring the case to justice (“Police Yet to File Warrants on Alleged Child-Rapist” Dec 22, page 18). In many cases, justice can be bought for cash. In the Siem Reap case the father of one of the suspects tried to buy his son’s way out of trial by offering the victim’s mother $500. Is the girl’s virginity-in a society that treats virginity as the most important thing worth this amount of money? I appeal to officials and the courts to take justice into consideration, and to double the punishment for those officials who are part of the executive body who violate the law. Impunity must be abolished otherwise the rule of law will not be respected.

Chak Sopheap
Phnom Penh

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