Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Japan envoy meets with GDP

Japan envoy meets with GDP

GDP representatives meet with Japanese Ambassador Hidehisa Horinouchi at party headquarters on Thursday. Facebook
GDP representatives meet with Japanese Ambassador Hidehisa Horinouchi at party headquarters on Thursday. Facebook

Japan envoy meets with GDP

Japanese Ambassador Hidehisa Horinouchi met with representatives of the fledgling Grassroots Democracy Party on Thursday morning, reiterating the need for opposition parties to partake in the upcoming elections to “reflect the will of Cambodian people”.

The meeting comes as the party deliberates its participation in the controversial July national elections, which follows the dissolution of the Cambodia National Rescue Party and jailing of its president, Kem Sokha, on “treason” charges last year. Party registration is currently underway and will end on May 14.

Horinouchi met with senior representatives of the GDP at the party headquarters, with embassy Counsellor Hironori Suzuki saying the ambassador conveyed that it will monitor the situation closely and give electoral stakeholders the necessary encouragement.

“We conveyed our message that it was important for all stakeholders, including the ruling party and opposition parties, to make efforts to hold this year’s national election in a way that will reflect the will of Cambodian people,” Suzuki said.

The Japanese government has continued to express its support and provide funding for the elections, even though the United States and European Union withdrew their contributions to the ballot, on account of its questionable credibility following the dissolution of the Cambodia National Rescue Party.

The GDP has been pegged as one of the alternatives to the CNRP, and earlier this week laid out four conditions that needed to be met for it to register for the elections.

These include an environment in which its activities, such as meetings with supporters, are not obstructed; no intimidation of candidates; freedom to publicise policies in the media; and the presence of national and international observers to monitor the ballot.

GDP President Yeng Vireak said that his party appreciated Japan’s attempts to ensure the upcoming elections were free and fair, again pointing to the conditions, which were conveyed to Japanese ambassador.

While the party has enlisted candidates in all 25 provinces, Vireak said it would take a decision on Sunday on whether to submit its party registration application.

“The board will hold a meeting and we’ll make a decision. If we decide to join we’ll submit the list on May 7,” he said.

With focus on smaller parties registering for the elections, the Candlelight Party released a statement on Thursday announcing it will not participate in the elections because, they contend, they would not be free and fair.

“We want to have the discussion and negotiation between CPP and CNRP, to solve the problem and improve the political situation,” said party Secretary-General Yu Seangheng.

Two smaller parties – Khmer Will Party and Our Motherland Party – also released a statement on Thursday condemning former CNRP President Sam Rainsy’s decision to publish leaflets calling for an election boycott.

The exiled opposition leader had asked supporters to print out the flier and distribute them, which the National Election Committee says violates electoral laws and could lead to criminal proceedings against Rainsy.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hun Sen to the rescue

    Cambodia has won praise for allowing passengers of the MS Westerdam cruise ship to dock at Preah Sihanouk port, thanks to Prime Minister Hun Sen’s humanitarian act. In a message via Twitter on Wednesday, the director-general of the World Health Organisation Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesu

  • PM orders immediate action against ‘sexy’ live streamers

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Monday ordered immediate action against women who live stream their sales pitches on Facebook wearing revealing clothing. The prime minister said the practice erodes traditional Cambodian values and disgraces women. Hun Sen gave the order to officials attending the Cambodian

  • Trump tweets praise for Kingdom docking ship

    Cambodia continues to earn praise for its humanitarian act of allowing the MS Westerdam cruise ship with more than 2,200 passengers and crew on board to dock at the Preah Sihanouk port. The praise this time comes from none other than US President Donald Trump. “Thank

  • Tourist area greenlit in Sihanoukville

    The National Committee for Coastal Management and Development will coordinate with relevant ministries over the establishment of a billion-dollar tourist area named Neak Reach in Preah Sihanouk province after it was proposed by the Ministry of Tourism. The Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and

  • PM issues human rights circular

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday issued a circular urging officials at all levels to work more closely with the Cambodia Human Rights Committee (CHRC) to protect human rights in Cambodia. In the circular, Hun Sen urged all institutions to collaborate closely with CHRC, including

  • Organic vegetable retailer unveils QR code scheme for origin source

    Organic vegetable retailer Natural Agriculture Village has introduced QR codes on its product packaging, which will allow consumers to see where their produce comes from. Natural Agriculture Village president Bun Sieng, who is also a member of local distributor Green Gold, told The Post on