Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - ‘Adhoc 5’ passed over for award

‘Adhoc 5’ passed over for award

Adhoc officials (from left) Lim Mony, Nay Vanda, Ny Sokha and Yi Soksan (grey hair, facing away) hold a press conference after their release on bail this year.
Adhoc officials (from left) Lim Mony, Nay Vanda, Ny Sokha and Yi Soksan (grey hair, facing away) hold a press conference after their release on bail this year. Yon Sineat

‘Adhoc 5’ passed over for award

Four staffers with rights organisation Adhoc and one National Election Committee official, collectively dubbed the “Adhoc 5”, did not win the prestigious Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders, a nomination they received during a 14-month stint in pre-trial detention in relation to a purported opposition sex scandal.

The five, who were released in late June, were in pre-trial detention for 427 days after they were charged with “bribery” while offering legal assistance to a Phnom Penh hairdresser allegedly romantically involved with Cambodia National Rescue Party President Kem Sokha. Despite their release, the case against them remains open.

The Adhoc staffers – Lim Mony, Ny Sokha, Yi Soksan and Nay Vanda – and NEC Deputy Secretary-General Ny Chakrya were nominated in April, but none of the five could attend the awards show because of travel restrictions associated with their bail.

“This is not a regretful thing for us. This [nomination] was already giving value to Cambodia, and it was our honour that we received it,” Adhoc spokesman Soeung Sen Karuna said yesterday.

The award, which was announced last night in Geneva, ultimately went to Egyptian Mohamed Zaree, Egypt office director of the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies. Salvadoran LGBT activist Karla Avelar was also one of the three finalists.

The Adhoc 5 could not be reached yesterday. The annual awards have been called “the Nobel Prize for human rights”, and are adjudicated by a jury of 10 of the world’s leading human rights NGOs.

MOST VIEWED

  • Government set to slash holidays

    The private sector has welcomed the government’s move to reduce the number of public holidays in the in the Kingdom – known for having the most public holidays in the world – by seven days. However, the government had just added the “Day of Remembrance” on

  • Kith Theang being held in PJ prison

    Kith Theang, the brother of prominent businessman Kith Meng, was charged by Phnom Penh Municipal Court late on Monday and sent to the capital’s Police Judiciare (PJ) prison over the nearly 50kg of drugs found in a February 23 raid by authorities on the Rock

  • ‘Kingdom lacks up to 400MW in available electricity’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has called on the general public, hoteliers and businesspeople with generators to use them as back-up as the Electricity Authority of Cambodia cannot generate enough electricity to meet needs due to low water levels in power station reservoirs. On Saturday evening

  • Sor Chandeth defends his criticism of Hun Sen

    Former senator Sor Chandeth has defended his choice of words when criticising Hun Sen, saying he was merely speaking metaphorically to attack the Prime Minister’s political life, not his actual person, as the latter seeks damages. [img] Chandeth spoke to The Post on Thursday,