News / Asia

    Reports on Cambodian Election Irregularities Submitted

    Head of opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party Sam Rainsy, second from left, gives a speech during a rally of their supporters after the July 28 polls, in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Tuesday, Aug. 6, 2013.
    Head of opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party Sam Rainsy, second from left, gives a speech during a rally of their supporters after the July 28 polls, in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Tuesday, Aug. 6, 2013.
    Heng Reaksmey
    The Cambodian National Election Committee (NEC) on Wednesday received more than 10 reports documenting irregularities in last month’s national elections.
     
    International and local rights groups and observers have called for further investigation into the allegations of irregularities, which presents a potential roadblock to the formation of a government.
     
    Election officials say they have formed a commission to investigate the information in the reports, which were filed by representatives of the ruling Cambodian People’s Party, the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party and the royalist Funcinpec, as well as local officials at various polling sites.
     
    Yim Sovann, spokesman for the Rescue Party, told VOA the opposition has received more than 10,000 complaints from supporters.
     
    "We urge a peaceful resolution at the negotiation table. Anything can be worked out so long as there are good intentions and political will that reflect our people’s will. We are making a great effort to avoid mass protests," said Sovann.

    Tep Nitha, secretary-general for the NEC, which is widely viewed as biased toward the ruling CPP, said the election body will address the complaints "with neutrality."
     
    "We have not made any decision yet. The commission will see how the issues raised should be addressed and next will submit them to the NEC. The NEC will then decide on how to proceed," said Nitha.

    Opposition leader Sam Rainsy said Tuesday that he will not accept the results of the election, and that a U.N.-supported investigation into irregularities is needed.
     
    Sam Rainsy has said that the Rescue Party would have won in a legitimate election and he called on his supporters to join in mass demonstrations if the results stand without an investigation.
     
    Meanwhile, Cambodian election monitors say the National Election Committee has denied them access to key documents that would help them independently evaluate election complaints.
     
    Monitors say the National Election Committee has not allowed them to inspect the national voter registry, the record of polling information at polling stations, or the registered list of voter ID cards, all of which stand at the center of the complaints.
     
    The ruling Cambodian People’s Party has been accused of manipulating the registry and voter IDs for a more favorable election outcome, a claim senior officials deny.
     
    CPP officials say they won the election, with 68 of 123 National Assembly seats, leaving the remaining 55 for the opposition. The Rescue Party says its own numbers show it with 63 seats, enough to win majority control of the National Assembly.
     
    A boycott of the opening session of the National Assembly by newly elected representatives from the opposition party could prevent the legal formation of a Cambodian government in coming months.

    Tep Nitha said the NEC is responding properly to the election complaints. He said the NEC has not denied documents to election monitors.

    "But the time is not favorable for us to do so, as we have to spend a lot of time on it. He called the request by the monitors a sideline story, from groups whose job was to watch over the election itself," said Nitha.

    Election monitors do not see it this way.

    Hang Puthea, head of the election watchdog Nicfec, told VOA Khmer that civil society groups need to review the voter lists, registries and polling station information to determine whether election allegations are true.

    You May Like

    Clinton, Trump and the 'Woman’s Card'

    Ask supporters of Democratic front-runner in US presidential campaign, and they’ll tell you Republican presidential candidate is playing a dangerous hand

    Russian Censorship Group Seeks Chinese Help to Better Control Internet

    At recent Safe Internet League forum in Moscow, speakers from both nations underscored desire for authorities to further limit and control information online

    Video Makeshift Pakistani School Helps Slum Kids

    Free classes in Islamabad park serve a few of the country’s nearly 25 million out-of-school youths; NGO cites ‘education crisis’

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Turkish Kurd Islamist Rally Stokes Tensionsi
    X
    April 29, 2016 12:28 AM
    In a sign of the rising power of Islamists in Turkey, more than 100,000 people recently gathered in Diyarbakir, the main city in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, to mark the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad. The gathering highlighted tensions with the pro-secular Kurdish nationalist movement. Dorian Jones reports from Diyarbakir.
    Video

    Video Turkish Kurd Islamist Rally Stokes Tensions

    In a sign of the rising power of Islamists in Turkey, more than 100,000 people recently gathered in Diyarbakir, the main city in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, to mark the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad. The gathering highlighted tensions with the pro-secular Kurdish nationalist movement. Dorian Jones reports from Diyarbakir.
    Video

    Video Pakistani School Helps Slum Kids

    Master Mohammad Ayub runs a makeshift school in a public park in Islamabad. Thousands of poor children have benefited from his services over the years, but, as VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem reports, roughly 25 million school-age youths don't get an education in Pakistan.
    Video

    Video Florida’s Weeki Wachee ‘Mermaids’ Make a Splash

    Since 1947, ‘mermaids’ have fascinated tourists at central Florida’s Weeki Wachee Springs State Park with their fluid movements and synchronized ballet. Performing underwater has its challenges, including cold temperatures and a steady current, as VOA’s Lin Yang and Joseph Mok report.
    Video

    Video Somali, African Union Forces Face Resurgent Al-Shabab

    The Islamic State terror group claimed its first attack in Somalia earlier this week, though the claim has not been verified by forces on the ground. Meanwhile, al-Shabab militants have stepped up their attacks as Somalia prepares for elections later this year. Henry Ridgwell reports there are growing frustrations among Somalia’s Western backers over the country’s slow progress in forming its own armed forces to establish security after 25 years of chaos.
    Video

    Video Bangladesh Targeted Killings Spark Wave of Fear

    People in Bangladesh’s capital are expressing deep concern over the brutal attacks that have killed secular blogger, and most recently a gay rights activist and an employee of the U.S. embassy. Xulhaz Mannan, an embassy protocol officer and the editor of the country’s only gay and transgender magazine Roopban; and his friend Mehboob Rabbi Tanoy, a gay rights activist, were hacked to death by five attackers in Mannan’s Dhaka home earlier this month.
    Video

    Video Documentary Tells Tale of Chernobyl Returnees

    Ukraine this week is marking the 30th anniversary of the world's worst nuclear accident, at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. Soviet officials at first said little about the accident, but later evacuated a 2,600-square-kilometer "exclusion zone." Some people, though, came back. American directors Holly Morris and Anne Bogart created a documentary about this faithful and brave community. VOA's Tetiana Kharchenko reports from New York on "The Babushkas of Chernobyl." Carol Pearson narrates.
    Video

    Video Nigerians Feel Bite of Buhari Economic Policy

    Despite the global drop in the price of oil, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has refused to allow the country's currency to devalue, leading to a shortage of foreign exchange. Chris Stein reports from Lagos businessmen and consumers are feeling the impact as the country deals with a severe fuel shortage.
    Video

    Video  Return to the Wild

    There’s a growing trend in the United States to let old or underused golf courses revert back to nature. But as Erika Celeste reports from one parcel in Grafton, Ohio, converting 39 hectares of land back to green space is a lot more complicated than just not mowing the fairway.
    Video

    Video West Urges Unity in Libya as Migrant Numbers Soar

    The Italian government says a NATO-led mission aimed at stemming the flow of migrants from Libya to Europe could be up and running by July. There are concerns that the number of migrants could soar as the route through Greece and the Balkans remains blocked. Western powers say the political chaos in Libya is being exploited by people smugglers — and they are pressuring rival groups to come together under the new unity government. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Russia’s TV Rain Swims Against Tide in Sea of Kremlin Propaganda

    Russia’s media freedoms have been gradually eroded under President Vladimir Putin as his government has increased state ownership, influence, and restrictions on critical reporting. Television, where most Russians get their news, has been the main target and is now almost completely state controlled. But in the Russian capital, TV Rain stands out as an island in a sea of Kremlin propaganda.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora