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As a member of Funcinpec Steering Committee and present at the committee meeting

on August 24, 2002, I wish to set the records straight with the Phnom Penh Post which

so wrongly reported on the discussions and contents of the meeting, in the article

"Funcinpec members fear meltdown" (August 30-September 12).

The Steering Committee meets on a regular basis and is chaired by the president

of the party or the dean, as stated in the party By-Laws. Contrary to your article,

I can assure you that I was not "ordered" to attend that meeting or any

meeting. I see my attendance as my duty and obligation. I can also assure you that

members of the Steering Committee speak freely at each meeting, and not a single

member has ever been interrupted or expelled for expressing his or her opinion.

At the August 24th meeting, H.E. Kol Pheng was proposed by the party secretary-general

as a spokesperson, and the proposition was unanimously supported by the Steering

Committee. It is not unusual for a political party to have a spokesperson. H.E. Kol

Pheng was nominated as spokesperson for his wisdom and his sense of responsibility.

We trust him to be fair and to speak with a high sense of ethics.

At that meeting, the president did not order anyone to stop speaking to the press.

To the contrary, the president reminded us of the freedom of expression, a fundamental

principle of democracy.

I wish to sincerely remind the Phnom Penh Post reporters or any reporter to seek

out people who wish to speak and dare to reveal their identity to make your articles

more credible. A credible article is based on facts that come out of research and

different opinions on the same issue.



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