Bowing to Pressure, Chamroeun Quits Party

Former CPP lawmaker Chea Chamroeun took to Facebook on Friday to declare his resignation from the Cambodian Liberty Party, less than four months after he announced its formation.

Citing political fatigue and negative feedback from Facebook followers in the wake of the party’s creation, Mr. Chamroeun said he had decided to focus on using “my skill and experience to help the young next generation and society.”

Mr. Chamroeun quit the ruling CPP in November and promptly held a press conference to announce the formation of the Cambodian Liberty Party.

Less than four months later, however, Mr. Chamroeun has become “tired with political issues,” he said in an interview.

“There were so many comments on my Facebook page that said ‘Because you left the Cambodian People’s Party, you should be an independent person,’” said Mr. Chamroeun, whose personal Facebook page has more than 500,000 followers. “Some people said I created the party because I wanted to split the voice of the CNRP.”

On Friday, Mr. Chamroeun posted the results of a Facebook poll he said he conducted earlier in the year, asking whether he should continue his career in politics. Nearly 50 percent of respondents said he should not, he said.

When he took their advice, Mr. Chamroeun said, his Facebook followers applauded the decision. “Good,” wrote a user named Boon Thon Lee. “Don’t let somebody say you created the party for splitting voices.”

“A person who used to be a teacher cannot do politics,” Bunthoeun Tum wrote .

Mr. Chamroeun, who has also served as a member of the National Election Committee and an adviser to National Assembly President Heng Samrin, said he was just one of 80 founders of the Cambodian Liberty Party and that it would live on without him.

“I have sent my letter of resignation today and Mr. Hor Kunthear, the vice president of the party, will automatically be acting president of the party,” he said.

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