Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Four parties approved for council polls

Four parties approved for council polls

Four parties approved for council polls

THE National Election Committee on Monday officially approved four

political parties to contest the provincial, district and municipal

council elections on May 17, amid renewed opposition criticisms that

the indirect elections are undemocratic.

NEC Secretary General

Tep Nytha said Monday the ruling Cambodian People's Party has listed

candidates in all 24 provinces, with the opposition Sam Rainsy Party,

Norodom Ranariddh Party and Funcinpec listing candidates in 23, seven

and five provinces,respectively.

"[On Monday] we closed

registrations for political parties and their candidates," he said,

adding that there had been "no problems" in the registration process

and that parties will have five days more to lodge complaints about

irregularities in the process.

But SRP President Sam Rainsy said

that the very process itself was flawed, and that May's "indirect"

council elections - in which only the 11,353 existing commune

councillors will be able to vote - would be a parody of democracy.

"I

think that this is the worst kind of election system because it does

not allow local people to have a direct vote," he said Monday.

He

added that the election of the new councils similarly diverged from the

government's policy of decentralising power and that control would

remain concentrated in the hands of the chairmen of the councils -

which he expected to be dominated by ruling party candidates.

"The

CPP does not want people to have a direct vote in every election in

Cambodia because it is still concerned about the democratic movement,"

he added.

Senior CPP lawmaker Cheam Yeap said, however, that the

opposition must work hard to build confidence among the people rather

than resorting to criticisms of  the ruling party.

"The CPP

respects the laws and regulations of the NEC, and we see that the NEC

has done a good job following the electoral law," he said.

"The NEC freely allows media to access all information related to the election."

MOST VIEWED

  • Proof giants walked among us humans?

    For years a debate has waged about whether certain bas relief carvings at the 12th-century To Prohm Temple, one of the most popular attractions at the Angkor Wat Temple Complex in Siem Reap province, depicted dinosaurs or some rather less exotic and more contemporary animal,

  • Japan bank buys major stake in ANZ Royal Bank

    Japan's largest bank acquired more than half of ANZ’s shares in Cambodia on Thursday, according to a statement from Kith Meng’s Royal Group. Japan's JTrust Bank, announced that they had acquired a 55% of stake in ANZ Royal Bank. According to a Royal Group

  • Long way to go before Cambodia gets a ‘smart city’

    Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang will struggle to attain smart city status without adopting far reaching master plans, according to officials tasked with implementing the program. The brainchild of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), the smart city program seeks to link up

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty