Senate Passes Reformed Election Laws in Quick Vote

The Senate unanimously approved the country’s two new election laws in a special session Monday, with the laws now only requiring review by the Constitutional Council and assent by King Norodom Sihamoni to be enacted.

The two laws, drafted by CPP and CNRP delegates in meetings held between August and March, and approved by the National Assembly last week, were passed by 49 senators in less than an hour, according to Senate Secretary-General Oum Sarith.

“The Senate’s session was no different to the National Assembly’s session, because the leaders of the two parties have agreed in principle and used the two working groups to draft the two laws over a long time and with critical discussion,” he said.

“Therefore, the two laws were passed without change or debate.” Sam Rainsy Party Senator Hong Sok Hour said his party’s nine senators voted in line with the opposition CNRP.

“We are not 100 percent satisfied [with the laws], but we have to accept what we have received so far, such as the important points of having a new NEC and new voter lists,” he said.

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