The National Election Committee and CNRP met with an organisation founded by former UN secretary-general Kofi Annan yesterday for talks that largely skirted around the legal action levelled against two non-CPP-aligned appointees to the election body.
The delegates from the Kofi Annan Foundation discussed electoral reform at the invitation of the NEC, while the CNRP requested they intervene in the case of jailed NEC deputy secretary-general Ny Chakrya.
Chakrya was arrested on April 28 with four human rights workers for allegedly bribing a witness in a sex scandal involving CNRP deputy Kem Sokha.
During a press conference, foundation chairman Alan Doss declined to comment on the issue as he did not have in-depth knowledge of the case.
He said Cambodia had “come so far”, and his group wanted to see the Kingdom “continue to strengthen democracy”.
According to NEC spokesperson Hang Puthea, NEC President Sik Bun Hok only briefly mentioned Chakrya’s ongoing detention in Prey Sar and confirmed the NEC would visit him in the near future, though he could not specify the date.
“The current NEC is reformed, so even though we lose members or some officials, the NEC can still be responsible for an election arrangement in the hope that the result can be accepted by participants.”
Sam Kuntheamy, executive director of election watchdog NICFEC, said he would meet with Doss today and broach the topic of CNRP-appointed NEC member Rong Chhun’s case, which involves “intentional violence” charges resurrected last week that stem from a 2014 protest where several workers were killed by authorities.
Additional reporting by Erin Handley