Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Grassroots party lays out policy platform

Grassroots party lays out policy platform

Senior GDP officials attend a meeting in April in Phnom Penh. The party has drafted a 125 point policy platform that includes term limits for publicly elected office, including the prime minister’s position. Facebook
Senior GDP officials attend a meeting in April in Phnom Penh. The party has drafted a 125 point policy platform that includes term limits for publicly elected office, including the prime minister’s position. Facebook

Grassroots party lays out policy platform

The Grassroots Democratic Party has created a 125-point policy document outlining its priorities were it to be elected to office in the July national elections.

The fledgling party has said that it will contest the elections, though any further deterioration in the country’s current political situation could result in a withdrawal from the ballot.

Party spokesman and Phnom Penh candidate Sam Inn said the document, which will only be available once it’s “published”, looks at natural resources management, energy and foreign policy, and defence. A reform proposed, he said, will be imposing term limits on political offices.

“GDP will also limit the mandate of the prime minister, National Assembly president, Senate president, municipal and provincial governor and commune chiefs to only two mandates,” he said.

Prime Minister Hun Sen has been in power for more than 30 years and many of his cabinet members and other senior government officials have been in office for decades.

While not providing details about the proposed policies, Inn said they were largely in line with the party’s founding principle of democratisation.

“Our target is to continue the democratisation process though we face big problems. We need to go forward because the Paris Peace Agreements have paved the way for Cambodia to select a multiparty democracy system,” he said.

The decision to contest the elections comes in the wake of the dissolution of the Cambodia National Rescue Party in November and the jailing of opposition leader Kem Sokha in September for “treason”.

Former opposition Deputy President Eng Chhay Eang said the substance of the GDP’s policies would be moot if they ever came close to ousting the ruling party, since they they could face the same fate as the CNRP.

“The [political] competitiveness depends on the powerful one, and this type of competition is not fair and cannot restore democracy,” he said.

Cambodian People’s Party spokesman Sok Eysan was more welcoming of the GDP’s participation in the elections.

“With their political programs, it is their right to have party policies and if they think it is good, then it is their business to introduce it to the people,” he said.

Hang Vitou, president of the Young Analysts Group, said that despite preparing for the elections and drafting a manifesto, the GDP does not have the resources and reach to challenge the CPP.

“If we talk about replacing the CNRP, I think that it [GDP] is not capable enough to do so and does not have enough capacity to become the biggest opposition party,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Omicron patients can stay home: PM

    The Ministry of Health has issued a directive on the treatment of people who have tested positive for the highly transmissible Omicron coronavirus variant, following a suggestion from Prime Minister Hun Sen on the night of January 21. The directive permits home quarantine for those who

  • The effects of the USD interest rate hike on Cambodian economy

    Experts weigh in on the effect of a potential interest rate expansion by the US Federal Reserve on a highly dollarised Cambodia Anticipation of the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike in March is putting developing economies on edge, a recent blog post by

  • Cambodia’s first ever anime festival kicks off Jan 22 at capital’s F3 centre

    Phnom Penh's first ever Anime Festival will bring together fans, artists, shops and other local businesses with ties to the Japanese animation style for cosplay competitions, online games, pop-up shops and more on January 22, with Friends Futures Factory (F3) hosting. F3 is a project that

  • Hun Sen gets 4th Covid shot, urges compatriots to follow

    Prime Minister Hun Sen and his wife Bun Rany on January 14 received their fourth dose of Covid-19 vaccine and called on compatriots to follow suit as the Omicron coronavirus variant continues to spread in the community. This marks the launch of Cambodia's fourth-dose vaccination campaign,

  • Fourth dose Covid booster drive jabs 43K in two days

    In the first two days of the fourth-dose Covid-19 vaccination campaign, more than 43,000 people volunteered to get the jabs, while over 4.6 million people have received a third shot. Health ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine said that fourth-dose vaccinations, which began on January 14 exclusively with the Pfizer

  • Singapore backs Cambodia's efforts on Myanmar

    Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong supports Cambodia in its efforts to seek a solution to the ongoing Myanmar crisis as the chair of ASEAN. Lee expressed his support during a meeting with Prime Minister Hun Sen via videoconference on January 14, with the talks focused