Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Promotions ‘tsunami’ political, says analyst

Promotions ‘tsunami’ political, says analyst

Promotions ‘tsunami’ political, says analyst

The elevation yesterday of three high-ranking Ministry of Interior police officials to the rank of four-star general saw one political analyst refer to a recent rash of promotions as a “tsunami of generals” – one that has been triggered by politics.

“Promotions are politically motivated, because the government, which holds power, needs the army to hold on to [that power],” political analyst Kem Ley said, adding that he believed the current government would “not step down” were it to lose an election.

In recent weeks, the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces has seen 29 people upped to the level of four-star general, while the Ministry of Interior has now promoted nine to that rank.

In total, Cambodia has 67 four-star generals, a number dwarfed by the number of generals at large.

Council of Ministers spokesman Phay Siphan yesterday rejected Ley’s take on the recent promotions, saying they were deserved rewards for meritorious service.

“All were promoted because they served the nation,” Siphan said. “The prime minister’s power does not come from the army, it comes from the confidence of Cambodia’s citizens.”

But Ley said there needed to be greater independence in the armed forces.

“If we do not reform the army to be independent under the King’s control, it could become the same as Burma [was],” he said, referring to past cases in which opposition politicians there have been arrested.

MOST VIEWED

  • Phnom Penh authorities ban march for Human Rights Day

    Phnom Penh authorities have banned a planned march as local NGOs and workers’ unions gear up to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on Monday, with a youth group leader saying they would march nonetheless. The UN

  • Phnom Penh’s Jet’s Container Night Market shuts down

    The famous Jet’s Container Night Market in central Phnom Penh has shut down due to the high cost of the land rental, company representatives claim. Jet’s Container Night Market is the largest such market in Phnom Penh. It operated for just over two

  • Hun Sen rejects ‘rift’ rumours spread by ‘stupid gangsters’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday denied a “rift” among top leaders of the Cambodian People’s Party (CPP), and rejected claims that Senate president Say Chhum and Interior Minister Sar Kheng were set to be removed from their positions as rumours spread by “gangsters”.

  • EU ambassador to Cambodia: Rights a ‘work in progress’

    The EU ambassador to Cambodia has called human rights “a work in progress” and said the 28-nation bloc has “carefully” noted last week’s statement by the government on taking further steps to strengthen democracy and the political sphere in the Kingdom. The EU marked