Dozens of people claiming to be disgruntled former members of the Sam Rainsy Party led a protest at the party’s Kompong Cham provincial headquarters Friday, police said.
Six trucks full of about 50 people arrived at party headquarters in the morning, claiming Sam Rainsy had treated them unfairly and cheated them. They were led by Neang Sean, a former Sam Rainsy Party member who was recently dismissed from the opposition party.
Seng Sokim, deputy chief of judiciary police, said Friday afternoon that most of the protesters had been dispersed, and only a small number of people remained. He said protesters had only been allowed to read speeches.
Mao Mony Vann, president of the Sam Rainsy Party in Kompong Cham, said there have been many threats recently.
“It is possible they would have attacked the office because it is so close to the commune elections,” he said.
But Seng Sokim said he was “confident” police could prevent violence.
Mao Mony Vann accused the CPP of paying poor people to join the protest. He said he recognized only three people in the crowd as being former Sam Rainsy Party members.
A vendor at the Kompong Cham market who asked not to be named said Friday that the CPP paid motorcycle taxi drivers 5,000 riel ($1.30) to 10,000 riel ($2.60) to take part in the protest. He called the protest “staged.”