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Breaching the law? CITA’s status called into question

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CITA President Ouk Chhayavy (centre) at the meeting to empower and strengthen the voice of Cambodian teachers yesterday in Prey Vang province. Facebook

Breaching the law? CITA’s status called into question

Officials have questioned the legitimacy of the Cambodian Independent Teachers’ Association – a frequent critic of government policy, saying it’s in breach of new laws on registering NGOs.

The Ministry of Interior has written to CITA, accusing it of violating the controversial NGO Law for having failed to officially submit the organisation’s statutes and meet other bureaucratic requirements.

The letter, dated March 3 but which emerged yesterday, says the CITA violated Article 7 of the law for failing to submit the organisation’s statutes that cover the structure of the organisation, the CVs and history for its new leadership, as well as their roles and responsibilities.

“The ministry suggests CITA re-examine” the items in question, Pol Lim, secretary of state at the ministry, said in the letter.

CITA president Ouk Chhayavy yesterday maintained she submitted all the relevant materials to the ministry before December 31 when the organisation held a congress to elect her as president.

She said she suspected the government was just cracking down on dissent. “They seem to discriminate [against] CITA because it always criticises the government,” she said. “This is not the first time.”

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