Officials told to be politically neutral at work

Ben Sokhean / Khmer Times No Comments Share:
KT/Chor Sokunthea

Interior Minister Sar Kheng has called on government officials across the Kingdom to avoid using state resources to facilitate political parties during the upcoming sub-national election campaign season.

Speaking to hundreds of provincial officials in Stung Treng province yesterday, Mr Kheng said all public officials must not campaign or work for a political party during working hours.

“You must not work for a political campaign during work hours or use state resources and institutions to carry out political campaign activities,” he said.

The Kingdom will hold its third provincial, municipal and district council elections on May 26. The campaign period will be held from May 17 to May 24, according to the National Election Committee.

All 11,572 commune councillors are expected to cast ballots. Political parties are expected to register candidates from March 7 to 11.

There are 559 seats up for grabs in Phnom Penh and the 24 provinces, while there are 3,555 seats up for grabs in all districts and cities across the Kingdom.

Mr Kheng said that all officials should focus on being civil servants, regardless of the political campaign season.

“All public officials have to work hard to serve the public, including providing public service without discriminating against the people’s political right,” he said.

“Based on our constitution, public officials can participate in politics but you are banned from using working hours to serve your political parties,” Mr Kheng added. “You can work for your party from 5.30pm to 10pm, and you can join the election campaign on Saturday or Sunday.”

Political analyst Lao Mong Hay said that all public officials should be politically neutral.

“All those public servants [should] be politically neutral and not carry out any activity in support of or against any political party,” Mr Mong Hay said.

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