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Student volunteers called home

Student volunteers called home

5 Student volunteers

Student land measurement volunteers will make their way back to Phnom Penh as next month’s national elections approach, Prime Minister Hun Sen said yesterday.

Speaking at a pagoda inauguration in Kampong Chhnang province, Hun Sen announced the second class of the youth volunteers will temporarily halt their duties on June 20.

“We cannot continue the program during the campaign, please understand,” the premier said. “If it would not violate campaign law, I would not suspend the program.”

More than 2,000 students are participating in the Prime Minister’s wide-reaching program, in which they measure land for villagers in the provinces, which can help them gain land titles.

The second wave of the volunteers met the goal set for them when they began work in February, to measure one million hectares – half the total area of land – by the time campaigning begins June 27. The 1,100 founding volunteers measured 580,000 hectares of land.

All political parties must respect campaign laws, National Election Committee member Som Chhandyna explained yesterday.

“Civil servants and local authorities of all levels… are not allowed to participate in any political party [activities] but they can after working hours or out of working time,” Chhandyna said.

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