Wat Lanka Monks in Dispute With State Electricity Provider

About 200 monks from Phnom Penh’s Wat Lanka on Thursday called off a protest against the planned construction of an electricity distribution substation on the pagoda’s land by state electricity provider Electricite du Cambodge (EdC), pending negotiations with the company. Having assembled to make banners for a protest march to Prime Minister Hun Sen’s home, the monks agreed to postpone the demonstration after their commune chief said EdC had agreed to temporarily halt construction on the substation—which is still in the preliminary stages. “We never agreed for Electricite du Cambodge to use the pagoda’s land to build this substation. They did not inform the monks here,” said chief monk Sao Chanthul, adding the march would still take place if a solution was not worked out soon. … “The pagoda is the property of the public and EdC has to provide electricity to the public,” he [EdC’s cable chief Hang Touch] said.

Eang Mengleng