Funcinpec Spokesman Resigns, Plans To Join CPP

Already ailing from a series of high-profile defections, Funcinpec has now lost its own party spokes­man, Nouv Sovathero, who confirmed Tuesday that he had left the struggling royalist party and plans to join the ruling CPP.

“I left the party,” said Nouv Sov­athero, who is also a secretary of state at the Ministry of Inform­ation. He added that he had submitted his letter of resignation to Fun­cinpec on Thursday.

“Being human, everyone wants to develop oneself,” he offered as an explanation for his resignation, but declined to elaborate.

He added that his defection to the CPP was not yet official.

“I have crossed the road to the other side—I’m only awaiting official acceptance,” he said, adding that it would be up to the CPP to de­cide what position he would serve in the government.

Funcinpec Secretary-General Nhiek Bun Chhay said Tuesday that he had received Nouv Sov­athero’s resignation, but did not know why he quit the party.

Information Minister and government spokesman Khieu Kan­harith said that the CPP considered Nouv Sovathero a welcome addition to the party and that he would retain his secretary of state position, as Funcinpec had not sought his removal.

“We haven’t received a request from [Funcinpec],” he said.

Lu Laysreng, minister of rural development and Funcinpec’s first deputy president, said that his party was too busy with the up­coming election to request that Nouv Sov­athero’s position be given to another Funcinpec member.

“I think we won’t care about his position because there are only six months until the election,” he said.

Koul Panha, director of the Committee for Free and Fair Elec­tions, said the loss of Nouv Sov­athero would not have much of an im­­pact on Funcinpec’s performance in the forthcoming election.

“Voters have experience with this policy of defections by politicians,” he added.

   (Additional reporting by James Welsh)

Related Stories

Latest News

The Weekly DispatchA new weekly newsletter from The Cambodia Daily delivering news, analysis and opinion to your inbox. Published every Friday at 11:30am. Sign up today.