Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Two top officials leave GDP




Two top officials leave GDP

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The Grassroots Democratic Party takes part in a parade to kick off the campaign period on July 10. Pha Lina

Two top officials leave GDP

After failing to take a single seat in the National Assembly, at least two senior officials have decided to walk away from the Grassroots Democratic Party (GDP), which began as a coalition of civil society organisations.

However, an analyst said the officials’ move was not a sign that the party was breaking up.

The GDP issued a statement on Sunday, announcing that it will not participate in Prime Minister-designate Hun Sen’s Consultation Forum – a committee made up of opposition parties which were invited by the Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) to air their views after the latter swept all 125 seats in the July 29 National Assembly elections.

It is set to have its inaugural meeting on Tuesday.

Speaking last week, Hun Sen predicted that many leaders would leave their parties to form new ones after the polls.

GDP board of directors vice-chairman Por Setha and fellow board member Khun Savoeun tendered their resignation letters on Sunday.

Savoeun said he resigned from the party because of its “inability while campaigning to seek votes”, adding that there were different perspectives within the party over the Consultation Forum.

He said he supported joining the meetings, saying, “our policy is one of national reconciliation, so we want to attend in order [to listen]”.

“If we don’t go in person, we just hear from others and it would not be clear,” he said.

However, Setha didn’t provide clear reasons as to why he chose to quit the party. A post on the GDP’s Facebook page said the party respected his decisions and wished them luck in the future.

“We would like to thank Mr Por Setha for his contribution to building the GDP. We respect his decision and wish him well and good luck,” said the post.

But in speaking to The Post, Setha said he left to focus on his job at Kandal’s provincial hall and his family, adding that he didn’t have enough time for continued work with the GDP.

Setha also said he wanted the party to participate in the Consultation Forum.

“In my opinion, the party should attend the forum. However, we need to be very careful . . . and avoid attacks from people who don’t like the government. We need to know how to talk."

“For example, it is an opportunity for us to speak. We must think about benefiting our country, and how we can build the society and the nation. How can we raise our farmers’ living standards?” he asked.

Both men said they had no intentions of joining another political party after the GDP.

The GDP announced something of a temporary hiatus on Monday, saying its leaders would be tired from the election process and hence, it would cease all communications for two months.

Political analyst Hang Vitou said even though some senior members had walked out, he did not see signs that the party was breaking up.

“I believe the party very likely granted its members [the right] to make their decisions. For example, if any member wants to walk away when they see [the party’s] decision is not good, they can do so."

“However, it doesn’t mean the party is breaking up. Without facilitation, any party could break up eventually,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • China and India closer to ‘biggest’ showdown

    Indian and Chinese troops remained engaged in an eyeball-to-eyeball situation in several disputed areas along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Eastern Ladakh on Thursday, signalling that the confrontation could become the biggest military face-off after the Doklam episode in 2017. Ladakh is a union

  • Central bank to shun small US banknotes

    The National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) is considering not accepting smaller denominated US dollar banknotes – $1, $2 and $5 – from banks and microfinance institutions (MFIs) which it said are flooding its stockpile as the demand for those notes is low. While some banking insiders welcomed the move as

  • PM lauded in Covid-19 fight

    World Health Organisation (WHO) director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus sent a letter to Prime Minister Hun Sen thanking him for following the WHO’s guidance and commending Cambodia’s efforts in the fight against Covid-19. In his letter made public by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs

  • Workers return, hope for salaries

    More than 600 factory workers in the capital’s Chaom Chao commune in Por Sen Chey district returned to work after the factory’s owner promised to pay their salaries in instalments until the middle of next month. On Tuesday and Wednesday, more than 600 workers gathered

  • Women detained for forcing kids to beg

    Two women were sent to Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Thursday for forcing six children to beg for money for several months at the Chhouk Meas market in Krang Thnong commune in the capital’s Sen Sok district. Phnom Penh Department of Anti-human Trafficking and

  • Vietnamese tents baffle border guards

    Kandal and Takeo provincial authorities bordering Vietnam have expressed concern after witnessing irregularities by the Vietnamese authorities, including the deployment of soldiers to erect 114 camps just 30m from the border. Takeo provincial governor Ouch Phea told The Post on Thursday that Vietnamese soldiers had erected 83