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Poll results predictable: observers

Upcoming elections for district, city and provincial councillors will follow a period of “education”, the National Election Committee has announced, despite observers’ view that the results are all but preordained.

And though the May 18 vote is only open to sitting commune councillors, NEC secretary-general Tep Nytha said yesterday that the election body would also be updating the list of eligible voters ahead of the poll.

However, Koul Panha, executive director of election monitor Comfrel, said the results of the vote could “absolutely” be predicted accurately today.

“It’s an undemocratic election, because they use indirect elections with a proportional system, allowing [only] the commune councillors to vote. They’re able to determine the result [beforehand],” he said.

Thida Khus, director of local poll monitor Silaka, said: “We support this council election as it is very important for the decentralisation policy, even though we know it is under the influence of the party leadership.”

ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY DANIEL PYE

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