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CCC begin hearings over disputed voter lists

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Constitutional Council of Cambodia president Im Chhun Lim. CCC

CCC begin hearings over disputed voter lists

The Constitutional Council of Cambodia (CCC) on December 21 began hearing a series of complaints filed by the League for Democracy Party (LDP) over irregularities in the voter registration list.

CCC president Im Chhun Lim presided over the hearings which are scheduled to be completed by December 23, according to a press release from the council’s general secretariat.

The LDP has filed 95 complaints pertaining to names of citizens on the voter rolls who have no listed residential address but whom authorities had allowed to register to vote.

LDP spokesman Ie Sangleng told The Post on December 21 that the National Election Committee (NEC) had refused to delete the names after they had been identified.

He alleged that election officials had processed the registrations after local authorities had forged documents.

Party representatives were ready to present their findings in the hearings, he said, but he declined to speculate in what way the council would rule on the matter, citing past condemnations the party had borne over issuing premature declarations. Nevertheless, he believes the party’s concerns are legal and pragmatic.

NEC deputy secretary-general Som Sorida said he expected that the CCC will uphold the committee’s decisions.

He said the NEC had made its determinations about voter registrations carefully and with attention to each specific case.

The committee, he added, has always investigated complaints, and the election secretariat has verified that each registration adheres to stipulations defined in the parliamentary election law.

“Before deciding to register or delete any names of citizens in the voters list, registration documents must be verified as containing all relevant information, presented truthfully and clearly and meeting lawful conditions. Registrars have filed photographs and supporting data related to the voting roster,” Sorida said.

Sam Kuntheamy, executive director of the election watchdog Neutral and Impartial Committee for Free and Fair Elections in Cambodia, said he intended to observe the hearing but had not been invited to participate.

“I expect that the CCC will hold this hearing in accordance with the principle of the rule of law and the proper legal procedures established to address complaints of this sort. The irregularities which have been identified appear to be in contravention of the law,” he said.

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