Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Chakravuth to face Funcinpec suit

Chakravuth to face Funcinpec suit

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Former Funcinpec deputy secretary-general and spokesman Nop Sothearith talks with the media on Sunday. Heng Chivoan

Chakravuth to face Funcinpec suit

Funcinpec acting president Prince Norodom Chakravuth is facing a lawsuit from some 85 per cent of party members after he released a statement removing four officials from their posts and announcing the closure of party headquarters in Chroy Changvar commune.

Former Funcipec spokesman Nub Sothearith – among the four to be relieved of duty – told reporters at a press conference on Saturday that Prince Chakravuth had ordered more than 30 security personnel to surround the headquarters after the decision was made public, but could not elaborate on the Prince’s decision.

The closure of the headquarters has raised fears among Funcipec members that they may not be able to stand in future elections, prompting some 85 per cent of them to prepare a formal complaint with the Ministry of Interior to ensure that they are still officially candidates, according to Sothearith.

“We hope this will achieve a positive result because we think that Cambodia has enough laws [on the books] to resolve these issues,” he said, adding that members also hoped to be provided with a reason for the decision.

Huon Huot, a Funcipec member of the Kandal provincial working group, told The Post that he had arrived at the party headquarters to attend the bi-annual meeting only to find the building closed and be forbidden from entering the premises.

Huot said although he was aware of rumours regarding a possible unification with the Nhek Bun Chhay-led Khmer National United Party (KNUP), he could not reveal why Prince Chakravuth had made such the decision.

In September, the Rasmei Kampuchea reported that Bun Chhay and Funcipec president Prince Norodom Ranariddh had met in Phnom Penh to discuss a potential party merger before the sale of Funcipec’s Mondulkiri headquarters.

Bun Chhay and a handful of loyalists left the Funcipec banner in 2016 to form KNUP in an attempt to mount a stronger opposition to the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP).

“I am concerned because there had been many political mergers but they did not benefit or help the party grow.

“Instead, the mergers made the party worse and almost dissolved it due to internal division. Besides, the party should not join those who almost destroyed it.

“We came for our bi-annual meeting, not to protest against unification with [the KNUP], but the prince disrupted the meeting,” Huot said.

The Post could not reach Prince Chakravuth for comment in time for publication.

However, Chakravuth’s statement said: “The Funcinpec party has the honour to inform all members of the party and the public that the Funcinpec’s headquarters [in Chroy Changvar commune] must temporarily cease its activities and close, effective from the date of this notice.”

Sothearith accused Prince Chakravuth of violating Article 24 of the party’s statute, adding that Funcipec members last convened for its Permanent Committee meeting on November 17.

Four officials – Sothearith, who served as deputy secretary-general and spokesman; secretary-general Pech Sochetha; deputy secretary-general Ros Saphorn; and cabinet director Kang Boran were also removed from the party.

MOST VIEWED

  • Siem Reap drain canal now ‘mangrove’ promenade

    A more than half a kilometre long stretch of canal in Siem Reap has been covered and turned into a promenade to attract visitors, said Ly Rasmey, secretary of state at the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction, on September 16. The new pedestrianised

  • Angkor wildlife, aquarium park still to open October

    The Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium complex about 30km southeast of Siem Reap town with initial total investment of more than $70 million is reportedly still on track for an end-October opening. The park is located on a 100ha plot along National Road 6 in Kbon village, Khchas

  • Final verdicts for Khmer Rouge leaders ‘vital’ for next generation

    Nearly a decade after the commencement of Case 002/02 against Khieu Samphan back in 2014, the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) is now set to deliver its final verdict for the former Khmer Rouge head of state. The Supreme Court Chamber of the ECCC,

  • Typhoon Noru brings flash floods – 16 dead

    An official warned that that the 16th typhoon of the season, Noru, had brought heavy rains to areas the Mekong River and flooded thousands of homes in the provinces bordering Thailand. As of September 27, the death toll from the flooding had risen to 16. National Committee

  • Defence minister reaffirms Kingdom’s staunch support for One-China policy

    Minister of National Defence General Tea Banh has reaffirmed Cambodia’s unwavering support for the One-China policy. Tea Banh was speaking at the September 20 ceremonial handover of 117 vehicles and other military equipment donated by China’s defence ministry, held at Phnom Chumreay International Military Training

  • Deaths due to ‘lifestyle’ diseases rise in Kingdom

    The Ministry of Health has called on people to pay closer attention to their health to protect themselves from non-communicable diseases (NCDs) which it said have caused high rates of deaths in the country. Ministry secretary of state York Sambath made the call at a