Phnom Penh Post
A DELEGATION of Sam Rainsy Party parliamentarians and doctors on Wednesday visited two villagers jailed earlier this month in connection with a border incident by the party’s president, and accused prison workers of providing them with inadequate health care.
Five parliamentarians and doctors out of the group of 20 were permitted to visit Meas Srey, 39, and Prom Chea, 41, after their relatives complained last week that their health was failing.
The two prisoners were given one-year jail terms on January 27 after Svay Rieng provincial court found them guilty of destroying public property. In October, they joined Sam Rainsy in uprooting border markers in Svay Rieng’s Chantrea district. Ly Sreyvyana, a doctor who travelled with the SRP delegation, said the medicine that had been given to the prisoners – who have complained of heart problems and low blood sugar, among other ailments – was not up to “international standards”, and complained that prison officials had prevented the delegation from bringing medical instruments inside.
“Only five people were allowed to go inside the prison, and they had to examine the prisoners with their bare hands,” she said. “Prom Chea’s health is very weak. His body is in seriously bad health, but his mental health is even more serious.”
However, Bin Vorn, deputy chief of the prison’s health unit, dismissed claims that the prisoners were not being properly cared for, saying the prison had enough medicine and was also willing to send the villagers to hospital if needed.
Referring to the comments from Ly Sreyvyana, he said, “If she said my medicines and cures are not up to international standards, I would like to see her guidelines and cure them according to those guidelines.”
Heng Hak, the director of the Interior Ministry’s prisons department, also said the prison was capable of giving the prisoners proper care.