Can­di­dates are safe: NEC

The Phnom Penh Post - - NATIONAL - Soth Koem­soeun

THE Na­tional Elec­tion Com­mit­tee (NEC) said on Wednesday that all can­di­dates and po­lit­i­cal par­ties par­tic­i­pat­ing in the July 29 elec­tions have the right to equal pro­tec­tion and safety un­der the law.

The com­ment from NEC mem­ber Duch Son was made on Wednesday amid claims from smaller par­ties that some lo­cal au­thor­i­ties have not been co­op­er­at­ing and even dis­crim­i­nated against them.

Speak­ing dur­ing a meet­ing in which he pre­sented the com­plete list of po­lit­i­cal par­ties and can­di­dates com­pet­ing in the polls, he cited Article 32 of the Con­sti­tu­tion which says in part that: “ev­ery­one has the right to life, lib­erty and se­cu­rity”.

Hence, Son said ev­ery can­di­date will also have these rights. If can­di­dates can pro­vide ev­i­dence that they have been threat­ened or treated un­fairly, they can con­tact the NEC, he said.

How­ever, Dhar­ma­cracy Party Pres­i­dent Poth­itey Sa­vathey said some lo­cal of­fi­cials have been hin­der­ing his party’s elec­tion prepa­ra­tions and re­fused to co­op­er­ate with po­lit­i­cal par­ties.

“When I went to meet my ac­tivists, they stopped my car un­til I con­tacted the NEC,”she said.

Sa­vathey also crit­i­cised the Cam­bo­dian Peo­ple’s Party’s (CPP) “fam­ily books”, which reg­is­tered party mem­bers in a fam­ily and re­quires them to pro­vide pic­tures of each per­son.

“I am not happy with the CPP for dis­tribut­ing a party fam­ily book to peo­ple and ask­ing them to fill in the forms in the book . . . one of my ac­tivists told me that his par­ents were forced to fill in the book, but he is ac­tu­ally a sup­porter of my fam­ily,” She said.

But CPP spokesman Sok Eysan said on Wednesday he is not con­cerned with any politi­cian’s re­ac­tions.

“We have noth­ing to say on this is­sue. It’s their right to com­plain. What’s im­por­tant is that the CPP does good deeds for the peo­ple and re­spects the prin­ci­ples of law and democ­racy. We can’t sat­isfy every­body,” he said.

NEC Sec­re­tary-Gen­eral Tep Nytha said the CPP fam­ily books are noth­ing to worry about.

“I think there is no prob­lem be­cause it just wants to know the party’s mem­bers, do not worry too much,” he said.

On an­other mat­ter, Son also said that in ad­di­tion to the num­ber of seats in each con­stituency, there are 125 seats di­vided into 25 cities and prov­inces, with six seats in Ban­teay Meanchey, eight in Bat­tam­bang, 10 in Kam­pong Cham, eight in Tbong Kh­mum and four in Kam­pong Chh­nang.

In the other prov­inces, there are six in Kam­pong Speu, six in Kam­pong Thom, six in Kam­pot, 11 seats in Kan­dal, one in Koh Kong, three in Kratie, one in Mon­dulkiri, 12 in Ph­nom Penh, one in Preah Vi­hear, 11 in Prey Veng, four in Pur­sat, one in Rat­tanakkiri, six in Siem Reap, three in Preah Si­hanouk, one in Stung Treng, five in Svay Rieng, eight in Takeo, one in Kep, one in Pailin, and one in Od­dar Meanchey.

HENG CHIVOAN

Cam­bo­dian Peo­ple’s Party spokesman Sok Eysan said he is not con­cerned by the com­plaints of other po­lit­i­cal par­ties.

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