Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Commune vote smooth but not perfect, says watchdog

Commune vote smooth but not perfect, says watchdog

Anfrel Secretary General Rohana Hettiarachchie speaks to the press during a meeting yesterday in Phnom Penh.
Anfrel Secretary General Rohana Hettiarachchie speaks to the press during a meeting yesterday in Phnom Penh. Niem Chheng

Commune vote smooth but not perfect, says watchdog

Asian election monitor Anfrel yesterday commended authorities, citizens and political parties for Sunday’s smooth commune elections, but stopped short of calling the ballot “free and fair”, raising concerns over the heightened political rhetoric in the run-up to June 4.

At a press conference yesterday, the body said it had 15 election observers and 21 volunteer observers scattered across 13 provinces and 151 polling stations. The mission’s leader, Rohana Hettiarachchie, said turnout (89.5 percent, per the NEC), voter registration and ballot counting had been acceptable – despite needing improvements – but challenges remain ahead of the 2018 national elections.

He added that election officials’ training was lacking at certain polling stations, and also highlighted the need for a legal framework for campaign finance monitoring, and the importance of an independent NEC. “The more independent the NEC, the more credible the elections,” he said.

Deputy mission leader Ichai Supriadi said a smooth election did not mean a “free and fair” election, pointing to the threats by government and military officials in the lead-up to the vote.

MOST VIEWED

  • Rainsy vow to return on Nov 9 dismissed as ‘political warfare’

    An announcement from the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) that its “acting president” Sam Rainsy would return to the Kingdom on November 9 was dismissed on Sunday as “political warfare”. The CNRP made the announcement on Friday after a permanent committee meeting chaired by

  • Kingdom rejects VN request

    Cambodia rebuffed Vietnam’s request to provide nationality to its citizens living in Kratie, Mondulkiri, Ratanakiri and Stung Treng provinces, with officials saying law enforcement is the Kingdom’s responsibility. Chheang Vun, the head of the National Assembly’s Committee on Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation,

  • Official transferred after pointing at car with foot

    The deputy director of the Siem Reap provincial Registration and Driver’s Licence Unit at the Department of Public Works and Transport who last week pointed at the number plate of a car taken in for a technical check with her foot has been transferred.

  • PM sues Rainsy in Paris court

    Prime Minister Hun Sen and Dy Vichea, the deputy chief of the National Police, filed lawsuits against Sam Rainsy, the “acting president” of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), for defamation in a Parisian court on Tuesday. The court action comes after Rainsy,