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Adviser roles allotted to revamped royalists

A Funcinpec party spokesman announced yesterday that more than 20 senior party officials have been appointed as advisers to the government at the request of newly returned party leader Prince Norodom Ranariddh.

Spokesman Nhep Bun Chin, himself one of the 24 reported appointees, said that Prime Minister Hun Sen had accepted Ranariddh’s proposal to award the 24 party members with positions equivalent to under-secretary of state and higher. Three government spokespeople, however, said yesterday that they had no knowledge of the appointments.

“These appointments are in the tradition of partnership between the Cambodian People’s Party and Funcinpec party,” Bun Chin said. “Samdech Techo [Hun Sen] sees that those officials have experience in serving the royal government, and have enough experience to serve the nation.”

Funcinpec won the country’s first democratic elections, but more recent elections have been less kind, with the royalists failing to win a single parliamentary seat in the 2013 national elections – a defeat that Bun Chin called “disgraceful”.

Opposition party spokesman Yim Sovann yesterday said the reported appointments were “politically motivated to prolong Funcinpec’s life” after its precipitous fall.

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