Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Voters test whether bleach removes ink

Voters test whether bleach removes ink

Voters test whether bleach removes ink

Following rumours that the indelible ink used to mark the fingers of voters was delible after all, hundreds who voted at Russey Sros Primary School in Phnom Penh’s Meanchey district yesterday took it as a challenge to wash their skin clean.

When polls opened at 9am, a few students showed up providing bleach for voters to test the permanence of the ink. The experiment drew a crowd, leading police to show after 30 minutes and confiscate the bleach.

Lam Chan Sophal, 50, said that after voting, he approached the men with the bleach to see if it could really erase the ink.

“I looked at the hands of a few women cleaned by the bleach; they were almost clean. I almost didn’t believe it but it was right in front of me,” Chan Sophal said, adding that shortly after, the police came to break up the crowd and seize the bleach.

Another voter, who wished to remain anonymous, said she had heard the ink was not effective and decided to see for herself.

“I tried, and I saw that it was clean. We were afraid someone could vote twice or many times per day,” she said.

Election watchdog Comfrel held a press conference on Saturday showing one of its staff members cleaning the ink from his finger in less than five minutes.

Koul Panha, director of Comfrel, said the ink was not effective and urged the National Election Committee to take action to ensure a fair election.

“Related NGOs are concerned about the ink. After testing it, we found it cleans right off. We are deeply concerned that someone could vote twice or more on election day,” Panha said.

But the NEC stuck to its claim that the ink, donated by the Indian government, could not be cleaned off once exposed to sunlight.

NEC chairman Im Suosdey said the ink was effective and had been used since 1998.

“It is quality ink – unlike Comfrel’s claims,” he said.

Post staff conducted their own experiment yesterday with one reporter, who five hours after voting cleaned the ink from her finger with ease using ordinary household bleach.

RECOMMENDED STORIES

  • Breaking: PM says prominent human rights NGO ‘must close’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has instructed the Interior Ministry to investigate the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR) and potentially close it “because they follow foreigners”, appearing to link the rights group to the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party's purported “revolution”. The CNRP - the

  • PM warns party of complacency in leaked audio

    Two leaked audio tapes, purportedly of Prime Minister Hun Sen speaking candidly to senior officials, appear to hint at insecurities within the ruling party over the controversial dissolution of the country’s main opposition, with the premier warning that the party’s “struggle” didn’t

  • Government approves plan to relocate Phnom Penh’s airport

    The government has signed off on a proposal to build a new airport to serve Phnom Penh and has earmarked land in Kandal province for the $1.5 billion project. A new international airport to replace the existing Phnom Penh International Airport will be constructed on partially

  • Music festival promises big stage, has even bigger hopes

    With a line-up of local and international artists, and a massive outdoor venue booked on Koh Pich, or Diamond Island, Saturday’s Diamond Moon Festival is aiming to showcase contemporary musical and artistic talents at a scale rarely seen in the Kingdom. [img] But the