The second in command of the leading student movement resigned his post last week, and said he plans to form his own group.
Suth Dina, a second-year student at the Royal School of Administration, resigned as first deputy chief of the Students’ Movement for Democracy, shortly after completing a one-month scholarship in the US. “I no longer have confidence in the Students’ Movement for Democracy,” Suth Dina said Monday.
Suth Dina recently completed a short government-funded scholarship to the US that he won through exams. He said he met many Cambodian-American groups and grass-roots organizers and learned about protest movements. But since his return, top leaders have refused to return his calls or listen to his suggestions, he said. “They did not listen to me so I must resign my post,” Suth Dina said.
In a statement released last week, he accused the student movement of being “undermined.” He maintained Monday that the group’s leader, Saro Sivutha, became less confrontational after meeting with Prime Minister Hun Sen and the Council of Ministers recently.
“Some political groups have used the movement to confuse the youth and Cambodian people,” the statement by Suth Dina said. “Later they will lose confidence in the movement.”
Saro Sivutha said Monday that Suth Dina had resigned “for no reason.”
And he implied it was his former deputy who has been undermined.
“In fact our student movement had no internal problems,” Saro Sivutha said. “Although somebody wanted to crack down on our movement, it could not.
“Maybe he was jealous of my ideals, or he was bought by someone, or he wanted to establish another movement,” Saro Sivutha speculated.
Suth Dina helped lead demonstrations several months ago to protest alleged border encroachments by Vietnam.