The Cambodian People’s Party yesterday celebrated its 69th anniversary with the inauguration of the party’s new headquarters in Phnom Penh.
Formerly known as the Khmer People’s Revolutionary Party in 1951, the party was eventually renamed as the Cambodian People’s Party.
In his message yesterday, Prime Minister Hun Sen said he considers “June 28” as the founding day of the CPP which began as a movement to fight for independence from the French and later ousted the Khmer Rouge regime in 1979.
“During the past 41 years, the Cambodian People’s Party has led the country in overcoming countless obstacles and attaining many big historical achievements since the national salvation from Pol Pot genocidal regime to achieve full peace, national unity, territorial unity and confidently moving forward in peace, democracy and development,” he said.
Mr Hun Sen recalled the party’s history as well the sacrifices of patriots for generations in liberating the country from invasion and building an independent, peaceful, democratic and neutral Cambodia with freedom and social progress.
The CPP started off as Khmer People’s Revolutionary Party on June 28, 1951 and along with the Communist Party of Vietnam and the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party opposed French colonialism in Indochina.
According to National Assembly president Heng Samrin’s book titled The People’s Struggle; Cambodia Reborn, the Khmer People’s Revolutionary Party was formed under the leadership of Tou Samouth and Song Ngoc Minh, also known as Achar Mean.
In 1981, the party changed its name to the Kampuchean People’s Revolutionary Party, before changing its name to the Cambodian People’s Party during its fourth party congress in November 1991.
According to Mr Samrin’s book, the late Chea Sim was elected as party chairman, while Mr Hun Sen was the deputy chairman. Mr Samrin was elected its honorary chairman.
Mr Hun Sen who was elected president of the CPP in 2015 after the death of Mr Sim said yesterday that every year the party’s founding day was observed solemnly with the participation of party officials and members at all levels.
“But this year the country is facing a big obstacle due to the COVID-19, which is spreading in all countries around the world, thus the Permanent Committee of the CPP’s Central Committee decided to postpone the commemoration to garner efforts to deal with the impacts caused by the pandemic,” he added.
Mr Hun Sen also called on party members and his compatriots to strictly follow the instructions of the government and the Ministry of Health to avoid the spread of the virus in the community.
Tens of thousands of members and supporters participated in the party’s anniversary celebration last year at Koh Pich.
Meanwhile, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Vietnam has sent a congratulatory message to the CPP’s Central Committee.
According to the message, the CPV and the Vietnamese people warmly congratulate the CPP and highly appreciates the party’s leadership and the government’s drastic and effective direction in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as in ensuring the implementation of socio-economic development programmes.
“The Party, State and people of Vietnam vow to do their best in joining their Cambodian counterparts to preserve and cultivate the Vietnam-Cambodia solidarity, traditional friendship, and comprehensive, sustainable and long-term cooperation to be forever green and everlasting,” the message read.
In addition, yesterday evening, Mr Hun Sen and Mr Samrin also inaugurated the new headquarters along Norodom Boulevard.
According to the CPP, the headquarters is called “January 7 Building” which refers to the Victory Day in 1979 when Phnom Penh was liberated from the Khmer Rouge regime with support from Vietnamese volunteer troops.
The building construction started in 2018 on a plot of 1.6 hectares in the same location of the old headquarters. The new building is 150 metres long, 74 metres wide and has five floors.
According to Mr Hun Sen, the new headquarters was built at a cost of $30 million, funded by voluntary contributions from CPP members nationwide.