Struggling to gain voter attention, some small parties have adopted populist platforms addressing two issues that often engage voters: Corruption and Vietnamese immigration.
Darun Chan, Cabinet chief of the Norodom Chakrapong Proloeung Khmer Party, said his party would expel all illegal Vietnamese immigrants if it were to win power in the July 27 elections, he said by telephone on Sunday. The 1 million Vietnamese in Cambodia, he said, will increase through immigration and reproduction to 4 million people “that don’t care about Cambodia.”
Darun Chan also frets about neighboring nations encroaching on Cambodian land. To counter it, the party wants to forbid landowners in border regions from selling land to anyone except the Cambodian government. “Territory on the border is territory for the whole country,” he said.
Other small party officials made similar statements when reached by phone on Sunday, reflecting comments made at a
14-party forum that took place on Thursday in Phnom Penh.
Suth Dina, president of the Khmer Front Party, said he wants to expel everyone of Vietnamese ancestry from Cambodia.
Immigration law and the Cambodian Constitution permit such drastic measures, he said Sunday.
“Khmer intellectuals and I have been observing the illegal Vietnamese communities in Cambodia for a long time,” he said. Suth Dina also said he wants to improve Cambodia’s relations with the US.
The Cambodia Citizens’ Party wants all government ministries to be run only by ethnic Khmers, which would leave out Cham Muslims, among others, party president Ty Chhin said Sunday.
Nuon Bunna, president of the Cambodian Women’s Party, said she would reinstate the death penalty for people found guilty of corruption. That would free up money to raise teachers’ monthly salaries to $200, she said Sunday.
Suth Dina also promised to fire those civil servants who work in multiple departments who are keeping “students and intellectuals” out of work.