Hundreds of protesters gathered in front of the Borey Kang Meng construction site in the capital’s Dangkor district on Monday to demand the developer honour its promise to divide the site into plots and give them land titles.
One protester from the 140 families locked in the dispute said they had sent a letter to Kaing Yu Meng, the director of Leang Heng Trading and owner of the Borey Kang Meng gated community, demanding he explains why it was taking so long to distribute plots and issue the land titles.
“We submitted the letter through our lawyer to urge [Yu Meng] to come forward with an explanation. It has been a decade since we gave them money for the plots to be divided and the land titles issued, but the firm has failed to shed any light on progress,” Chav Bunhean, a representative of the families, told The Post on Monday.
He said his family had ordered four plots of land in 2007, each measuring 20m by 30m, for which he had paid the full amount of $8,000 but was only given a letter of ownership transfer signed by local authorities.
“What is worrying is that we cannot sell or transfer the rights to the plots to other people, even though we paid the full amount to the firm. This is why we are gathered here to demand that they prepare the titles for us as soon as possible,” Bunhean said.
Another protester, Keo Bony, shared similar sentiments, noting that he had paid for his plots in instalments over the course of two years up to 2010.
“We have only got the ownership transfer letter, but haven’t even obtained the physical form of the plots as yet. We want the developer to divide the land and set up posts marking the boundaries of our plots,” Bony said.
The protesters also appealed to Prime Minister Hun Sen and Minister of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction Chea Sophara for intervention.
Kim Meng Khy, a lawyer representing Yu Meng, said, in reply to the letter sent by the protesters’ attorney May Vannady, that many factors had contributed to the delay in developing Borey Kang Meng.
He said many of the families purchased plots of land but had failed to fulfil their obligations in contributing to development, such as payments for sewers. The firm had also repeatedly faced financial problems.
Meng Khy claimed that the transfer of ownership rights had not gone smoothly this time due to technical issues on the part of Kandal province and Phnom Penh land officials.
“We are unable to confirm when these technical problems will be solved. Borey Kang Meng has requested the relevant authorities speed up the process,” he said.
Borey Kang Meng had previously never had any such issues, he added.