In­flu­en­tial deputy prime min­is­ter Sok An dies

Southeast Asia Globe - - News -

Just days af­ter he was awarded the ti­tle ‘Samdech Vi­bol Panha’, which trans­lates roughly to ‘Lord of Great­est Wis­dom’, Cam­bo­dia’s deputy prime min­is­ter Sok An fi­nally suc­cumbed to a bat­tle with long-term ill­ness on 19 March.

The head of nu­mer­ous other state in­sti­tu­tions, Sok An played a piv­otal role in Cam­bo­dian pol­i­tics and was of­ten likened to a Hindu god with 48 arms.

His po­lit­i­cal as­cen­dancy owed much to his close re­la­tion­ship with Prime Min­is­ter Hun Sen, who al­legedly set aside $750,000 of the rul­ing Cam­bo­dian Peo­ple’s Party (CPP)’s funds to pay for the funeral.

On 22 March, Hun Sen con­tra­dicted re­ports that 67-year-old deputy prime min­is­ter Bin Ch­hin would in­herit all of Sok An’s re­spon­si­bil­i­ties, say­ing that the sprawl­ing port­fo­lio would be split up be­tween a num­ber of min­istries.

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