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Premier puts the brakes on driver IDs

A person holds a driver's licence in Phnom Penh. The issuing of licences was suspended yesterday following a pledge from Prime Minister Hun Sen pledged to cut their cost.
A person holds a driver's licence in Phnom Penh. The issuing of licences was suspended yesterday following a pledge from Prime Minister Hun Sen pledged to cut their cost. Heng Chivoan

Premier puts the brakes on driver IDs

The Ministry of Public Works and Transportation stopped issuing new driver’s licences yesterday on the heels of a pledge by Prime Minister Hun Sen to lower their cost.

On Tuesday, Hun Sen wrote on his official Facebook page that he had ordered relevant ministers to lower the price following complaints from social media users.

“I will monitor this issue before allowing [the licences] to be issued again,” he said. A committee is scheduled to meet today to discuss how much fees will be reduced.

According to Preap Chanvibol, director of the ministry’s General Department of Land Transportation, a new licence costs 60,000 riel (about $15).

But Sorn Chhiev, director of the Affiliated Network for Social Accountability Cambodia, said the announcement was made to shield criticisms that the licence-issuing process was rife with corruption.

He added that drivers should not be fined for not carrying licences until the cards are issued again.

The number of people applying for a licence dramatically increased after the government said it would start enforcing its new, stricter Traffic Law on January 1.

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