Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Hun Sen: New government in September

Hun Sen: New government in September

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
National Assembly members vote on a law in February of 2017. Photo supplied

Hun Sen: New government in September

After winning what is said to be a landslide victory in Sunday’s polls, caretaker Prime Minister Hun Sen announced on Thursday that new members to the National Assembly would be confirmed, and a new government created by the third week of September.

However, a leader of a former opposition party said he would have trouble getting legitimacy on the international stage.

While addressing factory workers in the capital’s Por Sen Chey district, the Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) president called on officials at all levels to serve the people honestly.

Despite having no official results from the National Election Committee (NEC), Hun Sen said the National Assembly members would be sworn in on September 19 and 20.

“I am in the current position of Prime Minister and the future Prime Minister of the next government. As planned, it will be formed on September 20. This is the plan – on the evening of September 19, the national assembly will sit for the first time after the oath session is conducted."

“And on September 21, the first Council of Ministers meeting will be held,” he said. Additionally, he told officials to start improving their service to the people immediately.

“I would like to appeal to the members of the CPP, our burden is doubled in this sixth mandate. We have to serve the people honestly, be the honest slaves of the people.

“People put their trust in the CPP, so they do not need to wait for the new government. From now, return to the local [positions] and serve the people and solve their problems,” he said.

But Cheam Channy, a former Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) lawmaker, claimed that besides communist countries recognising Hun Sen’s regime, democratic ones will make it difficult for him to gain legitimacy.

“This government can be formed, but the question is whether it is recognised by the national and international community or not. Western countries, such as those of the European Union (EU) will not recognise it. It will be difficult to form a new government,” he claimed.

Nonetheless, Channy noted that Hun Sen had already been invited to visit the EU in October in order to join an Asia-Europe summit. He said many opposition supporters would protest during his visit there.

Paul Chambers, a lecturer and special adviser for international affairs at Naresuan University, said the very essence of representative democracy is that there exists a free and fair electoral system in which competing political parties can evenly compete.

“In Cambodia, a major opposition party was dissolved, the chief opposition leader was imprisoned, and other opposition politicians were forced into exile. Voters were encouraged and informally threatened to vote for Hun Sen’s CPP with the threat of criminal charges hanging over them,” he told The Post.

He claimed that vote counting centres were controlled by CPP appointees as was the Election Commission.

“In such an environment, Cambodia’s general election lacked sufficient legitimacy to be considered free and fair."

“Thus, rather than be a representative of democracy, Cambodia since the election is an autocracy masked by the charade of democratic appearances,” he claimed.

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’

  • 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

  • 'Pandora Papers' expose leaders' offshore millions

    More than a dozen heads of state and government, from Jordan to Azerbaijan, Kenya and the Czech Republic, have used offshore tax havens to hide assets worth hundreds of millions of dollars, according to a far-reaching new investigation by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (