Opposition may not take seats

Opposition may not take seats

Reforming election body still a sticking point between the government and the CNRP

Opposition politicians may postpone taking their seats in parliament if an agreement over the composition of a reformed election body cannot be reached in the coming days.

The decision over who will fill the ninth spot on the National Election Committee – reserved for a “consensus” member who will hold the balance of power – could prove problematic as civil society members who may be suited to the job are seen by the ruling Cambodian People’s Party as aligned with the opposition.

Opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party spokeswoman Mu Sochua said yesterday that if all nine members were not agreed on after the working group discussions, opposition politicians would postpone taking the oath of office.

“If they don’t accept our technical demand, which is that the nine members of the NEC must be selected . . . we are not going to take the oath,” she said.

CNRP spokesman Yim Sovann said that three cross-party working groups had been created to implement the fine print of an agreement reached between CNRP president Sam Rainsy and Prime Minister Hun Sen on Tuesday.

“It will take about two weeks to complete the amendment of the constitution, the amendment of the election law. Also we have to prepare the candidates for the NEC. We have to complete the legal framework,” he said.

Party leader Rainsy has been approved to become a member of parliament for Kampong Cham province, NEC secretary general Tep Nitha confirmed yesterday.

Cheam Yeap, a senior CPP politician, said the permanent committee of the National Assembly would convene on Monday to discuss Rainsy taking up a seat in the National Assembly.

At Phnom Penh Municipal court yesterday, CNRP deputy president Kem Sokha was questioned over a protest organised by party members that turned violent earlier this month.

Sokha said: “The judge asked me what I knew about the violence on July 15. I said I did not know anything about it because I was not there.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Angkor Wat named as the top landmark for the second year

    Travel website TripAdvisor has named Cambodia’s ancient wonder Angkor Wat as the top landmark in the world for the second year running in their Travelers’ Choice Award 2018, an achievement Cambodian tourism operators expect will attract more tourists to the Kingdom. The website uses traveller

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Hun Sen detractors ‘will die’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday said those who curse or insult him would eventually die without a plot of land to bury their bodies after being killed by lightning, suffering the same fate as those who recently died in Thmar Baing district in Koh

  • Ministry’s plan for net sparks fears

    The government has ordered all domestic and international internet traffic in the Kingdom to pass through a Data Management Centre (DMC) that has been newly created by the state-owned Telecom Cambodia, in a move some have claimed is an attempt to censor government critics. Spokesman