GDP had high hopes in Takeo province

Pav Suy / Khmer Times No Comments Share:
The GDP’s Yang Saing Koma smiles after voting. KT/Pav Suy

The Grassroots Democratic Party is expecting to win a majority of seats in Takeo province by securing the dissolved CNRP’s seats and stealing some from the ruling CPP, it said during the national election yesterday.

Yang Saing Koma, the GDP’s prime ministerial candidate, said that he expects to win a majority of the eight seats in his home province.

“We can say that we have high hopes for Takeo province, especially in Tram Kak district where I was born,” Mr Saing Koma said. “We will either win the province or gain the same amount of seats as the CPP.”

In 2013, the CPP split the eight provincial seats with the now-dissolved CNRP.

Mr Saing Koma said that the election was an opportunity to bring in fresh lawmakers into the National Assembly.

“What we are going to do next is keep an eye on the results,” he said. “We will have a new assembly and new lawmakers.”

Mr Saing Koma also said yesterday that despite a smooth election process, members of his party reported minor issues at various polling stations across Takeo province.

“The election process was fine, but we noticed that some village chiefs were just sitting by polling stations even though they finished voting, they were just standing there,” he said. “I don’t understand why they did that, but it seems to be the norm and the people are accustomed to it.”

“But I also saw vehicles with CPP stickers on them,” Mr Saing Koma said. “Aside from these issues, we have not received any major reports yet.”

Parties are not permitted to display propaganda anywhere near polling stations on voting day, he said. And the presence of village chiefs could intimidate voters.

Sok Kong Kearath, chief of the provincial election commission, said yesterday that the commission will welcome all complaints filed by political parties.

“We welcome parties to file their complaints with us,” Mr Kong Kearath said.

In Takeo, 494,717 voters cast ballots yesterday, representing 84.49 percent of the 585,564 registered electors. In 2013, 517,605 out of 660,151 registered voters cast ballots, a turnout of 78.41 percent.

Eighteen parties contested the eight Takeo seats yesterday at 1,545 polling stations across ten districts, where about 5,000 observers and 16 civil society organisations monitored the process.

Across the Kingdom, more than 6.8 million people cast ballots yesterday, representing 82.17 percent of the 8.3 million registered to vote. In 2013, voter turnout was about 69 percent, with 6.6 million valid ballots cast.

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