Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - CPP sets Monday vote for Party Law revamp

CPP sets Monday vote for Party Law revamp

CNRP lawmaker Ho Vann (left) and CPP lawmaker Chheang Vun speak to the press after a National Assembly meeting yesterday in Phnom Penh. Photo supplied
CNRP lawmaker Ho Vann (left) and CPP lawmaker Chheang Vun speak to the press after a National Assembly meeting yesterday in Phnom Penh. Photo supplied

CPP sets Monday vote for Party Law revamp

Knocking back the opposition’s request for a postponement, the National Assembly’s ruling party-controlled permanent committee yesterday set Monday for a vote on controversial changes to the 1997 Law on Political Parties.

The sweeping amendments, which critics say could be used to dissolve the Cambodia National Rescue Party under a variety of pretexts, were submitted by 60 Cambodian People’s Party lawmakers following a request by Prime Minister Hun Sen to rewrite the law to bar convicts from political leadership and dissolve parties if their leaders are convicted of crimes.

After an almost one-hour meeting, 10 CPP representatives on the committee ruled to hold an extraordinary plenary session next week for a vote, overriding the requests by two CNRP parliamentarians for a six-month delay.

Referring to the National Assembly as a “democratic forum”, CPP spokesman Chheang Vun called on CNRP lawmakers, whom he referred to as “our dialogue partners”, to attend the session.

Vun, however, noted the CPP held a majority and could pass the law regardless. CNRP lawmaker Son Chhay said members would meet on Sunday to decide whether to attend. “We will consider [joining] if the session includes a debate to change some points,” he said.

Fellow CNRP lawmaker Ho Vann said the opposition wanted, at the very least, to organise a seminar for stakeholders to help “improve the legislation”.

The premier’s threat to dissolve parties for crimes committed by leaders prompted Sam Rainsy on Saturday to resign as CNRP president and leave the party.

The legislation proposed on Monday, however, goes further, allowing authorities to dissolve political parties that violate a law or threaten the “security of the state” or “national unity”.

It also bars convicted criminals from holding leadership positions.

As Vann noted yesterday, several members of the opposition’s leadership group remain under legal clouds.

Citing political tensions and the fast-approaching June commune elections, he urged the CPP to reconsider.

“We should wait until the election is finished,” Vann said. “When the atmosphere is good, we can come together and talk together to amend this law with both parties.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Hun Sen: Full country reopening to be decided in two weeks

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has announced that if the Covid-19 situation remains stable for 15 consecutive days from the end of the October 5-7 Pchum Ben public holiday, Cambodia will reopen fully, albeit in the context of Covid-19 whereby people have to adjust their lives to

  • Cambodia sets new Covid-19 quarantine rules

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Will Evergrande change the way Chinese developers do business in Cambodia?

    China’s property sector policy has exposed the grim financial condition of real estate developers including those operating in Cambodia, which raises questions over the viability of their projects and business going forward The dark blue netting draping over one of Yuetai Group Co Ltd’

  • Cambodia unveils new quarantine regulations

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Phnom Penh governor: Show Covid-19 vaccination cards, or else

    Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng late on October 5 issued a directive requiring all people aged 18 and over and the parents of children aged 6-17 to produce Covid-19 vaccination cards when entering schools, markets, malls, marts, eateries and other business establishments that have been permitted

  • Cambodia seeks probe into 'false reports' on Hun Sen's alleged Cypriot passport

    Minister of Justice Koeut Rith on September 6 wrote a letter to his Cypriot counterpart Stephie Dracos requesting cooperation in investigating and providing the truth in relation to the "exaggerative and false allegations" that Prime Minister Hun Sen holds a Cypriot passport. In his letter, the