In Last Speech Before Vote, PM Spurns SRP

In his last public speech before the July 27 national election, Prime Minister Hun Sen reassured voters Monday that, if voted out, the CPP would transfer power peacefully, and reiterated a warning against so-called “people power.”

Speaking in Pursat provincial town, Hun Sen also re-emphasized that the CPP would only form a coalition government with Funcinpec.

“If the CPP wins, the CPP will establish a coalition government only with Funcinpec. In the case that Funcinpec has no seats, the CPP will do it alone,” Hun Sen said, adding that if Funcinpec wins fewer seats than they have now, he would appoint fewer Funcinpec officials.

Under no circumstances would the CPP form a coalition with the SRP, he added.

“I cannot work with you. You curse me every day. If you win, you take all. I am ready to walk out…. We will announce that we accept the election result. I will peacefully transfer power to you,” Hun Sen said.

Citing recent public demonstrations in Thailand, Hun Sen warned against the use of “people power” in Cambodia—a warning he has made in recent months.

“Political parties must not use people’s blood as tools to take power. You cannot do that. All political parties must be ready to recognize the election result, whether they win or lose,” he said.

“Because I will no longer give speeches, I appeal to the people to try to provide good security to establish impartial elections, freely and fairly,” Hun Sen said, adding that he will appear on television prior to the election when he visits provinces or meets with important guests.

SRP Secretary-General Eng Chhay Eang said he welcomed Hun Sen’s comment that if the SRP wins the election, they will form a government alone. He also said that if the CPP wins, the SRP will continue to be an opposition party.

“We will wait to see the election result. If there is the election fraud, and the people are not satisfied, people will protest,” he said. “It is up to the people, not the political parties. If someone steals their ballots, they must complain.”

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