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Clock ticking as NEC trains 6,000 voter registrars

NEC President Sik Bun Hok speaks yesterday at the launch of the computerised voter registration system in Phnom Penh.
NEC President Sik Bun Hok speaks yesterday at the launch of the computerised voter registration system in Phnom Penh. Heng Chivoan

Clock ticking as NEC trains 6,000 voter registrars

After many delays, the National Election Committee officially launched its computerised voter registrations system yesterday, though less than two weeks remain to train more than 6,000 staffers in the process.

At the event – which was attended by the ambassadors of Japan and the EU, who provided the computer equipment – NEC president Sik Bunhok acknowledged that the body had received the electronics late but maintained the registration process was still on track.

“We have had regular meetings with all relevant partners to increase transparency in the process leading up to registration,” he said.

The project, however, has been dogged by procurement delays, issues about scheduling and now, lingering questions over staffing and training.

Speaking to the Post yesterday, NEC spokesman Hang Puthea said that more than 6,000 staffers had been hired but still had yet to be trained for the nationwide registrations, which are set to begin September 1.

However, the body’s secretary general, Tep Nytha, said that despite the delay in training people, the NEC was not concerned about their capabilities.

“We have selected quality people. We believe that after the additional training, they can implement the work,” Nytha said, adding that 60 per cent of the staff were proficient in using computers.

He added that fail safes like a multi-stage verification process – the operator, monitors and Interior Ministry’s Khmer ID database – would also ensure a clean voter database.

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