A Funcinpec member who created a petition to remove other high-ranking party officials has instead himself been fired by party President Prince Norodom Ranariddh.
Party Deputy Secretary-General Seng Haksrun distributed a petition on Thursday calling for the dismissal of Deputy President Por Bun Sreu and Secretary-General Yim Savy, accusing the pair of nepotism.
That same day, in a statement made public on Friday, Ranariddh signed a request submitted by Bun Sreu dismissing Haksrun, as well as Nop Phorn, Meach Samroul and Pheap Pheach.
On Saturday, Ranariddh held a meeting with party members in Phnom Penh, during which he confirmed that he dismissed four officials at Bun Sreu’s request.
In a recording of the meeting, he also warned members of Funcinpec not to bribe journalists to hush up the story of internal conflict.
“Please keep this money to give to the people who vote for Funcinpec,” he said.
At the same time, however, Ranariddh went on to remind party officials not to make public internal quarrels.
In a written statement, the prince condemned the petition as “incitement” meant to “split internal solidarity”.
Haksrun, meanwhile, said in an interview that his dismissal was illegal, and vowed to file a complaint for defamation.
“I suffer too much in the position of deputy secretary-general,” he said, blaming Bun Sreu and Savy for a “party coup”, and claiming the pair are loyal to former Funcinpec President Nhek Bun Chhay.
“I will file a complaint because they defame my reputation,” Haksrun said.
Neither Bun Sreu nor Savy could be reached.