«បងប្អូននៅក្រៅប្រទេសល្មមឈប់ចាញ់បោកគេទៅ បើប្រើប្រព័ន្ធរបស់អាមេរិក ចាំពិចារណា ប៉ុន្តែប្រព័ន្ធសមាមាត្រនៅតាមខេត្តដូចនៅប្រទេសកម្ពុជា បងប្អូនមិនអាច [បោះឆ្នោត] ទេ បើបោះ តើបងប្អូននៅក្រៅប្រទេសចុះឈ្មោះនៅមណ្ឌលណាបោះឲ្យតំណាងរាស្ត្រនៅក្នុងខេត្តណា? នេះវាជាបញ្ហាវាខុសពីការបោះឆ្នោតជ្រើសរើសប្រធានាធិបតីដែលគប្បីត្រូវពិចារណា។ …ត្រឹមបោះឆ្នោតពីម៉ោង ៧ ដល់ម៉ោង ៣ ហើយបិទប្រអប់សន្លឹកឆ្នោតភ្លាមប៉ុណ្ណឹង គង់គេថាយើងបន្លំសន្លឹកឆ្នោត ចុះទម្រាំបោះនៅអាមេរិកមានរដ្ឋខ្លះម៉ោងខុសគ្នាទៀត។»
លោកនាយករដ្ឋមន្ត្រីហ៊ុន សែន ១៧ ខែកុម្ភៈ ២០១៦ ភ្នំពេញប៉ុស្ដិ
So Hun Sen alerts overseas Cambodians not to be cheated by his culture-of-dialogue partner CNRP. According to the premier, his partner tells Cambodians living and/or working overseas not to rely on the CPP because it says the CPP will not allow them to vote.
Ironically, Hun Sen goes on to explain why they cannot vote. He raises three major technical problems: the proportional voting system, non-existent electorates for overseas voters, and different time zones. It is puzzling that Hun Sen effectively endorses his partner’s claim that the overseas Cambodians will not vote under the CPP rule, while denigrating his own party’s effort to appeal to Cambodians overseas for support.
Nevertheless, he does not have to confirm the CNRP claim. After all, Hun Sen, whose wishes are others’ commands, can let the overseas Cambodians vote. First, Hun Sen has the laws on his side. Article 34 of the Constitution says all Cambodians have the right to vote and to stand as candidate for elections, and overseas Cambodians are recognised under Article 33. The law on election of the National Assembly members conforms to the Constitution; it does not prohibit Cambodians overseas from voting.
Second, Hun Sen has a large pool of PhD advisers and foot soldiers who can solve those election problems, which are not unique to Cambodia; it is not a rocket science. In fact, the current proportional election system is basically the same one the UN applied in the 1993 election, in which overseas Cambodians voted. The UN election process also sorted out the problems of different time zones and the absence of electorates for the overseas votes. If the Cambodian PhDs were not as smart, they could at least replicate what the UN did. Besides the UN, the rest of the world has overcome these technical challenges; why can’t Cambodia?
Third, Hun Sen can have some confidence in his footwork soldiers who travel and are stationed around the globe to galvanise overseas support for the CPP. His sons lead delegations travelling abroad selling CPP good news. His ambassadors are instructed to work overtime to court overseas Cambodians. His overzealous ambassador to South Korea stops at nothing to bring into the CPP line Cambodian migrant workers there, forcing South Korean authorities to step in twice to deny his blatant claim of their involvement.
Last but not least, Hun Sen can indeed count on his Facebook “likes”, the number of which is about to hit the three million mark, leaving his culture-of-dialogue partner for dead in their cyber race. An educated guess would suggest a fair chunk of the likes come from overseas Cambodians, which would be converted into votes for Hun Sen.
Thus, it will be possible for Hun Sen to win the overseas votes. Otherwise, he confirms the opposition’s claim is true. It will be a huge letdown among his sons and the PhD foot soldiers who put so much effort into promoting the party; their good work will unceremoniously be discarded as the work of no consequence.
Ung Bun Ang
One must be deaf as a post not to hear the alarm bell that ferociously rings from the top of the Ministry of Interior. How could Sar Kheng, whose legitimate income is only about $30,000 a year, afford this generosity that has cost him more than $200,000 since 1 January 2016 with no end in sight. Well, some pragmatic people would say he has his own police force to feed.
“Samdech Kralahom [Sar Kheng] contributes 4,000 riel [about $1] per day to nearly 3,500 traffic police. Samdech uses his own money to pay for the expense.”
Run Roth Veasna, the director of the public order department at the Ministry of Interior, 29 February, the Phnom Penh Post