Hundreds of ruling Cambodian People’s Party youth members swore an oath of fealty to Prime Minister Hun Sen yesterday, a vow which if broken some believe will lead to their deaths by lightning strike.
Pankhem Bunthan, president of the Youth Federation of Senaneak (YFS) said the group had decided to take the oath after Hun Sen challenged opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party president Sam Rainsy to swear by his claims of political manipulation by the CPP at the Preah Ang Dangker statue.
“We are taking the oath here today to protect the purity of the [CPP]. Sam Rainsy has accused the CPP of vote buying in 2013 and said that the Cambodian Red Cross is biased in its food distribution,” he said.
“Hun Sen invited Sam Rainsy to take the oath at [the statue], but [Rainsy] did not dare to do that.”
The CPP youth pledged to “protect and support the leadership of Prime Minister Hun Sen” and said “if we betray our oath, we will be struck by lightening, or killed in a car crash”.
“We all decide to respect and follow the leadership of the CPP and Prime Minister Hun Sen, forever,” they chanted.
Mao Pises, president of the Federation of Cambodian Intellectuals and Students, which is traditionally made up of opposition party supporters, said he had written to Hun Sen to request that the prime minister take the oath.
“I don’t care about their [pro-CPP groups’] activity. It’s their right to [hold such a ceremony],” he said.