Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - More security pledged for Oudong Mountain relics

More security pledged for Oudong Mountain relics

Minister of Cults and Religion Him Chhem carries a golden urn, said to contain the Buddha's remains, as a procession returns it to its home on Oudong Mountain on Friday.
Minister of Cults and Religion Him Chhem carries a golden urn, said to contain the Buddha's remains, as a procession returns it to its home on Oudong Mountain on Friday. Pha Lina

More security pledged for Oudong Mountain relics

A stolen golden urn said to contain remains of the Buddha was returned to its home in a stupa atop Oudong Mountain on Friday where authorities yesterday said it will be under constant surveillance to prevent a repeat theft.

Thai Norak Satya, spokesman for the Ministry of Fine Arts, said yesterday that owing to past ministry negligence leading to the relics being stolen in December 2013, the ministry has reconsidered the measures it had taken to ensure the security of the relic.

“It happened because of our reckless under-estimation, our reckless points; we thought that our guard here waiting was enough that nobody was going to steal a precious thing that everyone respects,” he said.

According to Satya, improvements are both structural – such as three gates being strengthened – and administrative, such as cooperation with local Kandal authorities.

“We will still keep working on it to see the [security] loopholes are fixed.”

Ministry of Cults and Religion spokesperson Seng Somony said the five surrounding provinces will contribute to the relics’ protection.

Ponhea Leu district police chief Doung Treng said the relic would be guarded at all times by rotating teams of 10 people and one district police chief.

“Before it was stolen, we didn’t have police to look after the relics closely,” Treng said.

“We didn’t even lock the relics, because we thought no one was going to steal it,” he added.

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Education’ a priority traffic-law penalty

    A top National Police official on June 21 neither rejected nor confirmed the authenticity of a leaked audio message, which has gone viral on social media, on a waiver of fines for a number of road traffic-related offences. General Him Yan, deputy National Police chief in

  • Pursat Ford assembly plant opens

    The Kingdom’s first Ford assembly plant was inaugurated on June 16 in Pursat province amid rising demand for brand-new vehicles among Cambodians. The facility is seen as a game changer for the domestic automobile industry, which could bring a wave of investors seeking to cash

  • Volunteer scheme to foster ‘virtuous’ humanitarian spirit

    A senior education official said volunteer work contributes to solidarity and promotes a virtuous humanitarian spirit among the youth and communities. Serei Chumneas, undersecretary of state at the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, made the comment during the opening of a training programme called “

  • Siem Reap’s $18M zoo said to educate public, help wildlife

    Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium Co Ltd has invested $18 million in a zoo in Siem Reap province, which will be opened in October to educate and promote animal conservation as well as attract national and international tourists. Currently, the Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium is building the

  • $50B infrastructure plan en route

    The government’s upcoming $50 billion,10-year infrastructure master plan will provide tremendous investment opportunities for domestic and foreign entities, transport experts and economists say. Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol revealed the plan to Japanese ambassador to Cambodia Masahiro Mikami on June 15. At

  • Chinese firms unveil preliminary results on metro, monorail for capital

    Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol and representatives from China Road and Bridge Corp (CRBC) and its parent company, the state-owned China Communications Construction Co Ltd (CCCC), met on June 24 for talks on results of the firms’ preliminary study on a potential metro