Small Parties Agree to Back Opposition

Two small political parties an­nounced Tuesday that they will support the Sam Rainsy Party and called on other small parties and members of civil society to support the political opposition in the 2003 national elections.

Ted Ngoy, chairman of the Free Development Republican Par­ty, announced Tuesday that he will terminate his party’s alliance with the ruling CPP in favor of the Sam Rainsy Party.

“I am leaving the CPP because I need freedom to help the Cam­bodian people and Cambodian agriculture. When I made the alliance with the CPP, no one—not Hun Sen, not Chea Sim—forced me to join,” he said. “I do not want to live as a bird in a cage.

“I am honored to officially an­nounce that our alliance [with the CPP] has ended due to distrust and non-confidence,” Ted Ngoy said. “I decided to strengthen my par­ty and devote my work to the sec­tor of agro-industrial development.”

Ted Ngoy was one of six members of the Phnom Penh Cham­ber of Commerce who was dismissed in July at the request of Chamber President Sok Kong.

At the time, the six staged pro­tests saying they were mistreated and charging Sok Kong with in­competence. Sok Kong said the dismissed members had violated chamber policy, not paid their dues or had no viable businesses.

Ted Ngoy also appealed to other small parties to support the Sam Rainsy Party in next year’s elections, and suggested that Cam­bodia should have a “good relationship” with the US and “work closely” with the US govern­ment on development projects.

Leng Seng, the chairman of the Party for National Rebuilding, also announced that he will support the Sam Rainsy Party.

“I support Sam Rainsy and I would like to join his hunger strike,” he said in reference to the opposition leader’s four-day pro­test of lavish spending by the government while Cambodians are starving. “I think that only two parties—the Sam Rainsy Party and the CPP—will compete in the 2003 elections,” Leng Seng said.

 

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