NEC Discusses Cases Involving SRP Officials

An internal National Election Com­mittee meeting was held Thurs­day evening to finalize details on an official hearing of two high-profile cases involving top SRP officials, NEC Director of Legal Services Keo Phalla confirmed Thursday.

The two cases were an appeal by SRP leader Sam Rainsy against $1,250 fines imposed on him by the provincial election committees of both Kratie and Kompong Cham for allegedly defaming CPP leaders, and one brought by SRP Deputy Secretary-General Mu Sochua accusing a CPP deputy village chief in Kampot of attempting to injure her with his motorbike.

Kompong Cham PEC chief Mang Meng Huon said Sam Rainsy had defamed CPP leaders on two occasions while in the province and had been fined $1,250 by the leaders after a July 11 hearing.

According to Kompong Cham deputy PEC chief Sok Chhin, Sam Rainsy had accused Prime Min­ister Hun Sen, Senate and CPP President Chea Sim and National Assembly President Heng Samrin of having sold the nation.

“Sam Rainsy accused the three leaders of corruption, selling territory, soil and land…and that the one in the middle [Hun Sen] was the worst,” he said Wednesday.

A CPP complaint was lodged July 7, and the decision was made July 11.

Sam Rainsy said by phone Wednesday that the decisions of the PECs in both provinces were unjust, as he had only referred to a published report by environmental watchdog Global Witness.

“I only talked about the report, which said the leaders are stealing the nation,” he said. “Why didn’t they sue Global Witness?”

He added that the CPP violated electoral law constantly by using TV and radio stations and other government means to attack him, but they were never fined.

Representatives of Kratie PEC could not be contacted for comment Thursday.

According to Keo Phalla, details and dates for the upcoming hearing would be announced in the next few days.

Keo Phalla added that any money received for fines imposed would go toward the national budget, and not to those that filed the complaint, as many have mistakenly thought.

According to an NEC statement released Thursday, ballots, ink­pots, pens and voter lists would be delivered to every province and municipality today and Saturday. The statement said the operation was being carried out under the observation of international and national monitors as well as officials from various political parties.

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