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Interior Ministry lauds election

Pech Sotheary / Khmer Times Share:
A police officer votes at a polling station he was guarding on Sunday. KT/Chor Sokunthea

Interior Minister Sar Kheng has said that the national election on Sunday was free, fair and was conducted smoothly without any major problems.

Mr Kheng said on his Facebook page on Sunday that it was thanks to the armed forces and authorities at all levels that the election went forward without any major problems.

“We can’t exclude the significant contributions of all citizens and all political parties that demonstrated political maturity and social harmony,” he added. “The world was able to see our achievements, as it was consistent with the practice of a multiparty democracy in Cambodia.”

More than 80,000 forces were deployed to maintain security and ensure that the election was conducted without any problems, he noted.

Interior Ministry spokesman Khieu Sopheak said yesterday that the security situation and public order were much better than previous elections, referencing violent incidents in the 2013 election.

“In 2013, there was a bit of a problem after the election with parties accusing and planning to hinder progress. But in 2018, there hasn’t been any problems,” Gen Sopheak said. “There was no violence, people were free to exercise their democratic rights.”

People line up to vote on Sunday. KT/Chor Sokunthea

Cambodian Youth Party president Pich Sros yesterday concurred that the election process was smooth and that it had a large turnout.

“The Cambodian Youth Party noticed that there were no threats,” Mr Sros said. “The CYP are very happy to accept the election results because it was free, fair and realistic.”

The Khmer National United Party also issued a statement expressing it’s gratitude to the National Election Committee, which in turn agreed with the government’s observation.

“The general mood of Cambodians was happy. People displayed solidarity and a sense of brotherhood,” the KNUP statement said. “We praise how counting votes were conducted by the NEC. The KNUP formally announces full recognition and support of the results of the sixth legislative election.”

Cambodian National Party president Seng Sokheng said yesterday in a statement that the election process on Sunday was considered fair, and a hallmark of democracy in the country.

“There was no intimidation, it was free, fair, transparent and acceptable,” Mr Sokheng said in the statement. “It was much better than the previous election.”

More than 6.9 million people cast their ballots on Sunday, representing 82.89 percent of the 8.3 million registered to vote. In 2013, voter turnout was about 69 percent, with 6.6 million valid ballots cast.

According to preliminary National Election Committee results, the ruling CPP secured 76.78 percent of valid votes nationwide, roughly 4.8 million, meaning that it will likely secure all 125 seats in the National Assembly.

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