Opposition lawmaker Sok Pheng could lose his membership in the embattled Cambodian Bar Association if he continues refusing to pay his monthly membership fees, acting bar President Ky Tech warned Friday.
Sok Pheng has refused to pay $250 he owes for five three-month terms as a bar council member, according to a letter sent from Sok Pheng to Ky Tech on Friday.
“I can withdraw his membership even though he is a lawmaker,” Ky Tech said, adding that Sok Pheng’s refusal to pay his fees is unacceptable. “It is odd. A hundred lawyers paid already,” Ky Tech added.
Sok Pheng wrote that he would pay his fees if Ky Tech were to be democratically elected to his position as president.
“I will pay for my membership immediately if the Bar Council’s decision empowers Ky Tech,” Sok Pheng wrote.
The bar council has been split since incumbent Ky Tech challenged the results of the Oct 16 presidential election in which lawyer Suon Visal defeated him.
Sok Pheng questioned Ky Tech’s right to collect as well as spend the association members’ money.
After president-elect Suon Visal took a majority of votes in the October election, he lowered the monthly fees from $50 to $30, but Ky Tech has since bumped the rate back up to $50, Sok Pheng wrote.
Ky Tech said Suon Visal’s decisions as bar president were all annulled. “It’s shameful that [Sok Pheng] is serving as a legal professional and lawmaker but does not know the law,” Ky Tech said.