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Parties all set for campaign as commune elections near

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FUNCINPEC party billboard being installed in Baray district of Kampong Thom province in April. FUNCINPEC

Parties all set for campaign as commune elections near

As the commune council elections approach, political parties say they are ready to mount their two-week election campaigns.

National Election Committee (NEC) spokesman Som Sorida told The Post that the campaigning period begins on May 21 and will lasts 14 days. During this time, the NEC will also issue additional instructions concerning marches and leaflet distribution in public places such as markets.

“We will instruct political party candidates about the rules surrounding campaign marches and the distribution of flyers for the 5th mandate [commune] elections which are scheduled for June 5,” he said.

Kheuy Sinoeun, deputy leader of the Cambodian Nation Love Party, told The Post on May 9 that his party had produced leaflets, banners, posters and other political media in preparation for mounting a campaign to garner support of the people.

He said his party could not determine the budget that would be spent on the election campaign. It was dependant on the party’s activists and leaders to make contributions, because the party did not have a budget to spend.

“We do not have a party budget, but will rely on contributions from the leaders and supporters from each province and commune,” he said.

FUNCINPEC spokesman Nhoeun Raden told The Post on May 9 that the party was ready to mount its campaign in the capital and provinces according to the schedule permitted by the NEC.

He added that at the national level, the party was planning a large-scale election campaign in Phnom Penh and would distribute political leaflets to each province, district and commune. The party would also visit its supporters at the grass roots level to gain increased support.

“The party has prepared important political messages which will be spread on social media as well as conventional media. The NEC gives parties equal time to broadcast their messages on television and in newspapers,” he said.

Raden added that the party had no budget prepared for the campaign, but depended on members and supporters in each capital and province to cover spending.

Thach Setha, vice-president of the Candlelight Party, also said his party was all set to mount a strong election campaign from May 21.

“We will hold a campaign launch in Phnom Penh on the first day and then we will work in the capital, provinces, districts, and communes. We will share our important political message by campaigning with loudspeakers and microphones, and will distribute leaflets to the public,” he said.

Setha added that although it was not yet time to launch the campaign, he expected widespread participation and support from the people in the capital and provinces across the country.

Sok Eysan, spokesman of the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP), said his party was always fully prepared and self-reliant in every election and had established well-managed campaign commissions from the national to the commune level.

He added that the party had also produced messaging to be broadcast on television and radio and prepared speakers for public forums held by NGOs or the NEC. The party was also ready to launch an election campaign in Phnom Penh.

“Political documents and campaign plans have already been prepared. We will open a strong campaign when May 21 arrives,” he said.

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