June 3, 2022
Khem Veasna. (Khem Veasna’s Facebook page)

Faith, Failure & Fealty: Khem Veasna’s Curious Path to Nirvana

Khem Veasna has long advocated for democracy, rule of law, and what he has called a true Buddhist path. But after repeated electoral letdowns, his League of Democracy Party has opted out of this year’s election as the leader has taken a stronger spiritual turn.

Village 3 chief Eng Vuthy, of Sihanoukville’s Muoy commune, in May 2022. (Danielle Keeton-Olsen/VOD)

Candlelight Hopes to Reclaim Sihanoukville’s CNRP Stronghold

The Candlelight Party describes Muoy commune as an opposition stronghold in Preah Sihanouk, where communities without land titles face precarious futures. A candidate who spent two years in jail over a land dispute thinks the issue will be his ticket to victory.

Da Chhean, KNUP’s commune chief in Banteay Meanchey’s Thmar Pouk, who is now helping his brother in the CPP, in May 2022. (Ananth Baliga/VOD)

Da for Defection: Sole Non-CPP Chief Joins the CPP

Ahead of the June 5 vote, the country currently has only one commune chief who is not from the ruling CPP: the KNUP’s Da Chhean in Banteay Meanchey. Chhean is now working with the CPP.

An excavator digging land near the Fu Hai land project in Preah Sihanouk province's Bit Traing commune on May 29, 2022. (Danielle Keeton-Olsen/VOD)

Preah Sihanouk Voters Conflicted by Land Issues 

Preah Sihanouk is scattered with shacks and trailer homes after years of land disputes uprooted communities. Residents of the most affected communes question whether their votes can put an end to land conflicts and homelessness.

The CPP’s rally on Phnom Penh’s Koh Pich on June 3, 2022. (Roun Ry/VOD)

Updated: Rain on Parades on Last Day of Campaigning

The CPP made a show of strength on Friday morning with a road rally that filled Hun Sen Boulevard with a river of white-clad supporters, while the Candlelight Party also gathered supporters in a march from Chbar Ampov.