NEC Rejects Request To List Deleted Voter Names

The National Election Committee on Wednesday rejected a proposal by the US-based National Demo­cra­tic Institute to create a separate list con­taining names that were deleted from the official register of voters for July’s national election, an official said.

NEC Secretary-General Tep Nytha said that the suggestion was re­jected because the official voter list has already been finalized and that it would be against the election law to create any new list.

“We cannot have two voter lists,” Tep Nytha said, adding that names erroneously deleted from the voter list have already been put back on it. “It was solved already,” he said.

NDI Resident Country Director Jerome Cheung said his organization made the suggestion, as the list would ensure every Cambo­dian has a chance to vote.

“The issue is trying to raise the bar in election administration,” Cheung said, adding that he was unaware that the NEC had already rejected the proposal. Though the NEC has improved election procedures dramatically, Cheung said, perception about improprieties, such as deleted voter names, can have a significant effect on elections.

“It’s up to the election body to en­gender this issue,” he said.

CPP lawmaker Cheam Yeap said that opposition parties, specifically the SRP, have disputed the accuracy of the voter list because they are losing hope of success in the election.

“They try to create such issues to prepare themselves for when they lose so they can deny the result,” he said.

SRP Secretary-General Eng Chhay Eang said the NEC’s decision demonstrated its bias toward Prime Minister Hun Sen’s ruling CPP. “NDI suggested [the idea] because many names were deleted unfairly,” he said.

(Additional reporting by James Welsh)

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