A drunken man assaulted a census officer in Takeo province on Monday, according to local authorities.
Prime Minister Hun Sen claimed the man was an opposition activist during a public speech, but was contradicted by local police.
Yong Nhiv, chief of Takeo provincial police’s minor crimes bureau, said the assailant was a 49-year-old farmer, Min Sok, who lives in Tra Peang Tra Kiet village, in Tran Kak district’s Uddom Soriya commune.
Nhiv disputed Hun Sen’s claims made at a groundbreaking ceremony in Phnom Penh for flood protection and drainage improvement. The prime minister said the assailant was a former activist for the dissolved opposition CNRP.
“I found out that an unfortunate incident happened in Takeo province in which an already-dead party’s former official beat a census officer and burned the census documents,” he said.
Deputy provincial prosecutor Phan Sopheak said the provincial court had charged Sok with intentional violence and placed him in pretrial detention.
Cambodia launched its third general population census on Sunday, an attempt to enumerate all residents of the country over a period of 10 days.
The National Institute of Statistics has said that the census’s provisional results will be announced in three months. Cambodia’s first census in 1998 showed a total population of 11 million, which increased to 13 million in the 2008 census.
Reported by Sim Dane