04 April 08
My wife and I returned once again to the province of Banteay Mean Chey to put into use the Mean Chey University after we came on February 18, 2008 to preside over the groundbreaking of the re-construction of the railroads between Sisophon and Poi Pet and to the Kingdom of Thailand. And last year we also came here to witness the construction of the University.
University Relates to Chief of Staff
My wife and I are so pleased and appreciate highly, in my name as well as on behalf of the Royal Government at HE General Ke Kim Yan's initiative in getting this University built for the sake of developing human resources in the region and as a token of memory that relates this place to his background.
HE General Ke Kim Yan first joined the army stood guarding the bridge here in 1979. He has transformed himself from a soldier to the Chief General Staff of the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces. This has proved that CPP never depends on kinship or political relation, or generations to get their man appointed. We appreciate a man and give the job according to his capability.
It is indeed a good idea and in the preface of the special issue of the 2008 Review of the General Staff, HE General Ke Kim Yan did mention a lot his vision in relation to human resources development in the north-western part of the country. The University has been built at the cost of more than six million US dollars with many contributions made by various donors through various occasions.
What we have achieved beside the cost of building this University is the fact that our students who have finished their study in colleges no longer have to go to Phnom Penh or other provinces but they could stay here to further education. The University would accommodate some students from Banteay Mean Chey, from Battamabang, Uddor Mean Chey, Pailin and also from a part of Siemreap.
To the east of country's Svay Rieng province we have a University built by General Police Chief Hok Lundy. In Siemreap HE Sieng Nam, a member of parliament built a University as well. We have more Universities now built not only in Phnom Penh but also in the province as well.
From Battle Field to Development Zone
HE General Ke Kim Yan said in his address that he would like to turn this battlefield into development zone and it has now been realized in the last recent years because in all parts of the country, where there used to be battlefields have now become zone of development.
As we have now achieved peace and the war is gone what should we do? Now fighting places have become primary or kindergartens or junior or senior colleges, and in some places we have built University as well. Days ago I went to Pailin and there has a University there as well. In Banteay Mean Chey, we have a college for every commune. It is indeed a magnificent achievement. As I used to say if we know how to do it, we can make use of the opportunity to multiple results.
We should make use of peace and national reconciliation for the sake of our country's development and because of knowledge, experience and high technology we can take a shortcut toward development. What is important here is that the University has now got close to our people and they should hold on to this opportunity. I would urge our female students not to drop school but to stay all the way to get high education as male ones.
Thank for Birthday's Messages
I am so grateful that because today is my birthday I have been offered a bunch of flowers from the committee and also I would like to express my sincere thanks and gratefulness to the message of HM the King of Cambodia, and of Samdech Ov, the Heroic King-Father and Samdech Me, the Heroic Queen-Mother that highly appreciate my activities in the country's liberation movement as well as the search for peace and re-establishment of the Kingdom of Cambodia, and my support to HM the King Sihamony.
I also thank Samdech Chea Sim and Samdech Heng Samrin, as well as the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces for their best wishes for my birthday. Today, thirty eight years ago I went to the jungle. My birthday is indeed a different one but this is my day when I joined the army and the struggle to liberate the country from foreign aggression in response to the appeal by Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk. My history is indeed not different from that of HE Ke Kin Yan because I started as a soldier whose age was not even 18 years old.
Best Wish for the Opposition
Having achieved such a wonderful birthday wishes I would like to share that with our people - both supporters and those in opposition that they be blessed with happiness and long life. It is so simple that I wish the opposition because as long as they stay as opposition leaders, I will keep staying as head of the ruling party. I also want to have a strong competitor and not a weak one./.