Three applicants have been shortlisted for the top spot on the reformed National Election Committee, with a final decision to be made on January 15.
Tep Nytha, 61, the current secretary general, is still in the running. The other two candidates are Heng Monychenda, 56, the director of NGO Buddhism for Development, and Ya Navuth, 43, a law graduate and director of NGO Caram Cambodia.
Twelve candidates for the position of deputy secretary general have also been shortlisted.
Nytha has come under fire from opposition supporters for his tenure as NEC secretary general. Cambodia National Rescue Party members have accused him of helping to rig the 2013 vote and adding to the ensuing political instability.
Hang Puthea, the current NEC spokesman, said now that the 15 shortlisted candidates had been chosen, the NEC would meet on January 15 to reach a final decision on who will fill the secretary general and four deputy secretary general positions.
All shortlisted candidates will be required to submit a criminal record history prior to the decision being made, Puthea added.
Koul Panha, executive director of election monitor Comfrel, said he thought the secretary general position should be reserved for a new candidate.
“A new person among the three should be chosen, as learning the election tasks doesn’t take long and is not a serious challenge,” he said.