Candlelight Party emerges from meeting with plans to win votes at national polls

Candlelight Party held a meeting in Siem Reap on Sept 10. - CP VIA FACEBOOK

PHNOM PENH (The Phnom Penh Post/Asia News Network): The Candlelight Party (CP) has issued its seven-point set of guiding principles to be implemented in the lead-up to the national election on July 23 next year.

According to the party’s Sept 10 press release, the principle includes internal consensus, developing the quality and capacity of the party’s structure from the bottom up, policy formulations that reflects the people’s needs and good cooperation with state ministries in order to effectively participate in solving problems and confronting threats that affect the political rights of citizens.

CP vice-president Son Chhay told The Post on Sept 11 that after its three-day discussions in Siem Reap province, the party settled on these principles, the main purpose of which is to achieve success in the upcoming elections.

Chhay said CP agreed not to insult other parties during the election campaign and would even issue congratulatory statements to the victorious party that wins the most votes with a focus on policies that attract people to their ranks by providing obvious benefits, social justice and better lives.

“We no longer compete with individuals, but fight for the benefit of the nation and the people. We hope that the National Election Committee [NEC] organises the election well and we want to turn the page, offer our blessings and begin a new chapter in our history.

“We want to contribute to strengthening society and serving it to the best of our ability, which was the main purpose of the discussions at the workshop,” he said.

Sok Eysan, spokesman for the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP), told The Post that CPP welcomes all political parties, including the CP, to compete in the 2023 national election.

Eysan does not believe that the CP’s foundation – with its roots in the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) – is strong enough. He was of the view that the CP’s structural arrangement and the results of its meeting in Siem Reap only demonstrated the internal turmoil within its ranks.

Eysan also noted that CP only won 20 per cent of the votes in the June 5 commune council elections, though some of their leaders then “went around telling people that their party had won”.

“[If] CP is modelled on the former CNRP and carries on implementing its principles, it will continue to fail,” Eysan said.

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Cambodia , Candlelight , party , election


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