Backed by generous donors, the CNRP has the means and money to continue its demonstration against alleged vote-rigging for “as long as it takes,” party spokesman Yim Sovann said Monday.
As the opposition’s second day of demonstrations came to a close, Mr. Sovann said that the party had an ample kitty of cash, which is continuously being topped up, with which to provide sustenance, amenities and entertainment to its supporters at Freedom Park.
“We haven’t been able to tally everything, but from September 1 to 7 we received by donation about $40,000, 100,000 bottles of water and uncountable amounts of food and medicine” he said. “That alone is enough means for 50,000 people to survive for three days.”
“We are completely funded by donations and with everyone agreeing to donate, we can demonstrate for one month, two months, three months; whatever it takes,” he said, adding that major donors support the demonstration on the condition that they remain anonymous.
Mr. Sovann estimated that 200,000 people had passed through Freedom Park on Sunday and Monday, and said that many were still giving to the cause, citing the shooting death of Mao Chan on Sunday night as their reason.
“People are willing to donate more to the cause because of the man who was killed. They are all very sad and it only makes them more committed to the cause,” Mr. Sovann said. “Each day [at the demonstration] we are receiving between $2,000 and $3,000.”
Despite having enough cash, the CNRP only has five portable toilets at Freedom Park, the northern edge of which is fast becoming an open-air urinal.
Mr. Sovann said a deal had initially been struck with one company to provide a further 20 toilets, but the deal was reneged for unknown reasons.
“We have tried with every company in Phnom Penh that rents the toilets,” he said, “but there are none available in Phnom Penh. It’s a bit strange.”
A tent set up to administer first aid was jammed full of people Monday afternoon, with most reporting headaches, dizziness or diarrhea.
Cheang Vanath, one of five volunteer doctors on duty, said he had hardly stopped handing out medicine since he helped set up the tent at 6 a.m. Sunday.
“It’s a long day, from 6 [a.m.] until 10 at night,” he said.
“I have had more than 4,000 people come for treatment but only for small problems,” he said.
“We are lucky, we have thousands of dollars [worth of medicine donated] from medicine vendors in Olympic Market and Tuol Kok and we have some people who just arrive and provide.”
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