Hun Sen Says Mansion, Feng Shui Seal His Election Win

Prime Minister Hun Sen said Monday that the auspicious location of his Phnom Penh mansion—on Suramarith Boulevard between Wat Lanka and Wat Botum—was a clear sign he would be victorious in July’s national election.

It is not the first time the prime minister has made references to the spiritual or superstitious of late to support his victory predictions.

Earlier this month, Mr. Hun Sen said that his oldest son, Hun Manet, was born from a powerful spirit that revealed itself as a flashing light that shot out of a banyan tree. And, following the cremation of King Fa­ther Norodom Sihanouk in February, he claimed the spirit of the late King Father must have been watching over him as he was able to light the funeral pyre after numerous others had failed.

“In terms of fortune, my house is in such a good location that nobody can defeat me,” Mr. Hun Sen said at the inauguration of a $630,000 monk residence at Wat Lan­ka attended by several thousand people.

“My location is on the dragon’s shoulder and in between two pagodas,” he continued, apparently referencing feng shui, the ancient Chinese practice of geomancy that arranges objects and buildings so as to maximize good luck.

“That is why nobody can kill me and nobody can demote me. It’s in the fortunes, we must believe,” he said. “Some people have wanted to be prime minister since they were born, but they can’t do it,” he added. “I myself never wanted to be prime minister, my goal was to be a teacher, but the country’s situation forced me here.”

The prime minister added that he had initially agreed to hold his position for only three months because he believed many intellectuals would return to Cambodia in the years following the fall of the Khmer Rouge in 1979, and take the helm. However, he noted: “Three months has become 30 years already.”

He also said that as long as voters supported him at the ballot box, he would remain as the country’s leader, and critics who believed he had overstayed his welcome were wrong.

“Thirty years in power is not too long; they say it is too long, but it is too long for them. This is what the people need as they keep voting for me,” Mr. Hun Sen said, adding that even if the opposition did win, he doubted they would stick to their promise to amend the Constitution so that the prime minister could only rule for two mandates.

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