Honorary CPP President Heng Samrin reaffirmed Monday morning his party’s commitment to a long-term political alliance with Prince Norodom Ranariddh’s Funcinpec, but stressed that neither party depends on the other for success at the polls.
While both parties are committed to working together in the next coalition government, each has to work on its own to earn votes, he said.
“We must depend on our own [abilities],” Heng Samrin told reporters outside the National Assembly. “We are on our own when it comes to winning votes.”
Heng Samrin, who is also first vice president of the National Assembly, added that he doesn’t consider Funcinpec a weak party.
“I don’t assume the Funcinpec is weak or strong,” he said. “One party has certain strengths, the other party has different ones.”
Asked if Funcinpec could “depend on” the CPP, Heng Samrin replied: “If they depend solely on the CPP, the CPP will grab all [Funcinpec’s votes]. [Funcinpec] must depend on its own abilities.”
He nonetheless claimed the CPP-Funcinpec alliance would continue as long as Funcinpec has seats in the National Assembly.
“This alliance cannot be dissolved,” he said.
Funcinpec spokesman Chea Chanboribo repeated Funcinpec President Prince Ranariddh’s claims that the CPP-Funcinpec alliance will help Cambodia gain the confidence of foreign investors.
“This alliance is important to ensure the stability of the country,” he said.
Heng Samrin also said that the CPP would hold its extraordinary congress before the end of 2005 to plan for the party’s future.
The CPP is supportive of Hun Sen as prime minister for his current term, Heng Samrin said, but he added that the party has not yet decided on whether Hun Sen will be nominated for another term as prime minister.
Asked if there were other prime ministerial candidates, he said: “We don’t have any yet…. Leave the decision to the party congress.”