Football Body To Hold Presidential Election

Cambodian Football Federation President Khek Ravy said on Sun­day that elections will be held to vote in a new CFF president, a position that he has held since 1998 and that government officials said was due for re-election in 2001.

CPP officials at the Ministry of Ed­ucation, Youth and Sports last month accused Khek Ravy, a Fun­cinpec member, of holding the pres­ident’s job unlawfully, and claim­­ed that they had demanded in 2003 and 2005 that re-elections take place.

Khek Ravy responded by stating that the ministry could not force an election, as the CFF was a member of the international football federation FIFA.

“I think it is good to have an election,” Khek Ravy said by telephone on Sunday.

At the Council of Ministers meeting on Friday, Prime Minister Hun Sen ordered the Education Ministry to hold an election for the CFF presidency.

CPP Education Ministry Secre­tary of State Bun Sok said that all clubs affiliated with the fed­er­ation can forward candidates for Khek Ravy’s job. He denied that the is­sue was related to inter-party politics.

“This is sport management on­ly,” Bun Sok said, adding that rules and procedures for the election would be discussed next week and that the vote should take place this year.

Khek Ravy said he would run for re-election.

Continuing its purge of Fun­cin­pec officials appointed at the provincial level, the government removed Stung Treng Provincial Governor Khim Seila, replacing him with CPP Interior Ministry official Loy Sophat.

It was the sixth Funcinpec provincial governor removed since the National Assembly approved the 50-percent-plus-one voting formula, which gave the CPP control of the As­sembly and made the royalist vote inessential to Hun Sen’s ruling party. Cambodian Ambassador to the Philippines Ok Socheat said that rumors of his removal were also circulating.

Funcinpec Secretary-General Nhiek Bun Chhay declined to comment on the latest removal of his par­ty’s officials, as he was in a meeting. Government spokesman and Information Minister Khieu Kan­harith denied that Funcinpec officials were being removed from government.

“The removal is not because they are Funcinpec governors. The removal is because the previous ap­pointments were wrong,” he said.





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