The National Election Committee raised the tally of political parties fully registered for the upcoming national elections to five on Wednesday, with the royalist Funcinpec party joining the list.
Led by Prince Norodom Ranariddh, Funcinpec currently holds 41 seats in the National Assembly to the Cambodian People’s Party’s 79. The party was part of a reshuffle to fill the vacant seats after the CNRP was dissolved.
Dim Sovannarom, NEC spokesperson, said on Wednesday evening that five parties now had ballot access, but that they expected the remaining 15 registered parties to successfully complete the process.
Yoeurng Sotheara, an election expert, said he highly valued the large quantity of participating parties but called their lack of quality “not democratic”.
He added that the recent occurrences, such as the dissolution of the CNRP – the nation’s only viable opposition party – could impact the image of the election.
“If politicians go to compete for nothing or just to add meaning to politics, it means wasting the voters’ hopes, but I am not saying that every party is bad.”