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

  • 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

  • PM eyes Myanmar peace troika

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has suggested that ASEAN member states establish a tripartite committee or diplomatic troika consisting of representatives from Cambodia, Brunei and Indonesia that would be tasked with mediating a ceasefire in Myanmar. The premier also requested that Nippon Foundation chairman Yohei Sasakawa

  • Demining rat ‘hero’ Magawa dead at 8

    A landmine-hunting rat that was awarded a gold medal for heroism for clearing ordnance from the Cambodian countryside has died, his charity said on January 11. Magawa, a giant African pouched rat originally from Tanzania, helped clear mines from about 225,000sqm of land – the equivalent of 42

  • 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,