The ruling Cambodian People’s Party was confirmed the overwhelming victor at the June commune election, as the electoral body announced on Sunday the final results of an election marred with allegations of irregularities and intimidation.
The National Election Committee concluded the June commune election when it announced the final results on Sunday, confirming the CPP’s hold on 9,376 council seats across the country, or around 80% of councilors. The Candlelight Party came in second with 2,198 councilors.
The CPP will continue its near-absolute hold on commune chief positions with 1,648 chiefs. Candlelight will muster four chief positions. Seven other parties will have councilors across the country: Funcinpec, Khmer National United Party, Grassroots Democratic Party, Cambodia National Love Party, Cambodian Youth Party, Kampucheaniyum, and Beehive Social Democratic Party.
The results were announced on national broadcaster TVK, where two presenters announced results for each commune, telling viewers how many votes and councilors each party won in that commune. The electoral body also released documents for provincial breakups of the results.
Hang Puthea, an NEC spokesperson, said the election body had resolved all complaints before the announcement and parties were not allowed to challenge Sunday’s results.
The NEC would send the results to the Interior Ministry, he said, which would initiate the transfer of power to 1,652 new councils.
“NEC will send this calendar to the Ministry of Interior to prepare the next procedure and transfer the old commune council`s position to the new-elected commune council within 14 days starting from the formal result announcement.”
The results also show that Candlelight will have 25 first deputy chiefs and 1,360 second deputies across the country. The seven smaller parties also have first and second deputy representatives on councils.
Women make up 22% of all elected councilors, of which 25% of CPP councilors are women, with Candlelight having only 9% women councilors.
|Party||Councilors||Chiefs||1st Deputy||2nd Deputy|
|Cambodian People’s Party||9,376||1,648||1,618||261|
|Khmer National United Party||13||–||1||10|
|Grassroots Democratic Party||6||–||2||2|
|Cambodia National Love Party||5||–||2||2|
|Cambodian Youth Party||3||–||–||3|
|Beehive Social Democratic Party||1||–||–||1|
Sam Inn, from the Grassroots Democracy Party, said some parties felt the elections were not free and fair because of irregularities during voting and the counting of ballots. The party would now focus on initiating electoral reforms, Inn said.
The party won only six councilors and Inn said they would continue to serve the people, especially in communes where candidates were reelected.
“We will continue to encourage our members who were elected before and reelected again, such as in Kampot, Ratanakiri, Kampong Thom and Preah Vihear, to continue to find out the concerns and challenges of the people and bring their issues for discussion at the commune council and let them advocate for the benefit of the local people,” Inn said.
The CPP released a statement on Sunday accepting the results and calling the election “free and fair,” adding there was “neutrality, security and order, and no violence and threats.”
The party denied accusations from other parties of election-day and counting irregularities, voter and candidate intimidation, and registration irregularities.
“This election result came from the heart, will and real understanding of voters who have strong hope for the continued progress in communes and the improvement of their livelihoods and have denied the lies, incitement and twisting of the truth by the extremist opposition group and some bad people who always prevent the process of development in Cambodia,” the statement read.