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NEC to print more than 10.5M ballots for vote

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Representatives from parties competing in Cambodia’s July 29 national elections examine sample ballots on Wednesday. Hong Menea

NEC to print more than 10.5M ballots for vote

The National Election Committee (NEC) on Wednesday confirmed it will print more than 10.5 million ballots for the July 29 national elections, while predicting that more than eight million people will go to the polls.

NEC spokesman Dim Sovannarom said a sample ballot was printed and shown to representatives of the 20 contending political parties that were invited to the NEC offices to verify the presentation of their parties, including their logos.

Sovannarom confirmed that the NEC planned to print more than 10.5 million ballots, including 329,200 samples, at a cost of 900 riel per ballot, despite predicting an 8.3 million voter turnout.

He said many of the ballot sheets will be used to educate voters. Each polling station will have ample ballot papers to ensure everyone who shows up to vote can do so in accordance with the law of the Sixth National Assembly elections process.

“Only after representatives of the political parties confirm their party’s signature abbreviation and logo are proper will we print the ballot,” Sovannarom said.

Chhiey Bunthoeun, the deputy secretary-general of the League for Democracy Party, said he had asked for a change in format, favouring having voters place a checkmark in the box next to their preferred party instead of having voters place their index finger in ink and mark the box that way.

Sovannarom, however, said the format of the ballot is codified by law and cannot be amended. “If there is a change in this format, it would be easy for voters to commit fraud,” he said.

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