New Siem Reap police chief sorts out priorities

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National Police chief Neth Savoeun (right) introduces new Siem Reap provincial police chief Teng Channath on Monday. NATIONAL POLICE

Siem Reap’s new provincial police chief Teng Channath pledged to make road safety and Covid-19 prevention measures the major enforcement priorities following his official appointment as successor to Tith Narong on September 13.

Channath was promoted to his new position by the Ministry of Interior to replace the retiring Narong. Among other positions, he was also deputy police chief in charge of traffic in Siem Reap back in 2012.

The inauguration ceremony was held at the provincial hall in the presence of National Police chief Neth Savoeun, who attended on behalf of interior minister Sar Kheng.

Savoeun encouraged Channath to follow the good example set by present and former provincial police chiefs throughout the nation.

“As a new provincial police chief, you have to meet regularly with the provincial command and hold meetings with participation from all commanders from the provincial down to the local levels so you can intervene in a timely manner when problems arise relating to security and social order,” Savoeun said.

Channath told The Post that he was committed to ensuring the safety of the people and preventing the spread of Covid-19 through communities.

“Career advancement often means a change in roles, but most importantly I will work with the government to prevent the spread of Covid-19 in our communities as I continue to work on strengthening security in the province.

“One role I can continue to play that I have previous experience with is helping to reduce traffic accidents and educate the public about the traffic laws, because our citizens generally obey the laws if they are fully aware of them.

“There are still some citizens who do not respect the laws who must be penalised but we will combine that with gentle gestures towards furthering the education of offenders when the practical situation allows for it,” he said.

Siem Reap Provincial Administration spokesman Liv Sokhom said he anticipated that the new police chief would continue to cooperate with the provincial authorities just like his predecessor so that they may all work for the common good of the people.

“I used to work with Teng Channath. He is a person with a good attitude. He is gentle but he respects the badge and takes his job seriously. So I assume that as provincial police chief he will continue to perform his duties well, especially with traffic law enforcement because formerly he has done good work in that area,” he said.