Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Serey slams Rainsy for lying ‘again and again’

Serey slams Rainsy for lying ‘again and again’

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Sam Serey has criticised Rainsy for ‘lacking principles’. facebook

Serey slams Rainsy for lying ‘again and again’

In an interview with The Post on Sunday, Khmer National Liberation Front (KNLF) founder Sam Serey blasted former opposition leader Sam Rainsy for his “demagogic policies” and “telling lies again and again”.

Serey’s comments were made partly in reference to events in early December in which Rainsy was nominated “acting president” of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) at an international party conference held in Atlanta, Georgia, in the US.

Sections of the party labelled the move a “coup”. Serey said this showed the alliance between former CNRP president Kem Sokha and Rainsy had reached a breaking point.

“It has already broken [the Sokha-Rainsy alliance] because they have two different political opinions but share the same party. [Rainsy] launched a party coup and became the acting president on December 2."

“This party coup is not beneficial because it is power grabbing and hinders support from the international community because it is against the party’s bylaws. The CNRP has a problem because of this disagreement, and it is beneficial for the [ruling] Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) that wants to see them break up,” he said.

Serey, who was granted political asylum in Denmark in 2011, claimed to have set up a Cambodian “government in exile” and has been labelled a “terrorist mastermind” by the elected government in the Kingdom. In 2014, he was sentenced in absentia to nine years in prison for allegedly “plotting” to overthrow the government.

He went on to criticise Rainsy for his lack of principles in his efforts to combat the CPP, and also accused him of toying with CNRP president Sokha’s destiny as an “immoral” act.

“[Rainsy] does not have clear principles or strategies to compete with the ruling party, and he mostly uses unclear demagogic policies, telling lies again and again. That is why I refuse to join him. He has been participating in political games with Hun Sen lately."

“It is not a good thing for politicians to play with the destiny of one person. It is not a virtue and he seems to not understand human values,” he said.

Serey also highlighted inconsistencies between Rainsy’s words and actions, accusing him of having “no clear goals”.

“I have observed his actions and most of them are lies. In 2014 he swore he would not enter the National Assembly but he did. He also wrote a letter to Hun Sen to return to the country, thereby supporting Hun Sen who wants to seem like he is establishing a culture of dialogue. He promised to change, but he instead negotiated with Hun Sen."

“He declared he would return to the country, but he has not returned. He collected money to create a television channel, but he has not built it yet. He keeps making promises, but he does not keep them,” he said.

Serey was also critical of Rainsy’s recent “one person” campaign to project unity in the party.

“It is the language used to capitalise on Sokha’s popularity by saying that he [Sokha] and Rainsy are one person. In fact, Rainsy has taken his chance to negotiate with Hun Sen so that he can return to the country. In short, he is not a real opposition politician as he has got no clear goals and principles,” he said.

Social and political analyst Meas Nee said he thought the rampant criticism among Cambodia’s opposition politicians was a sign of their “weakness”.

“The weakness of the opposition starts with arguments like this. They spend too much time arguing with each other rather than confronting the opponent,” he said.

Former CNRP party lawmaker Ou Chanrath said Serey had the right to criticise Rainsy and any other politician.

“Whether it is a demagogic policy or not, I can’t comment. But, I think in some areas, it is his strategy that others simply cannot understand. With respect to him telling lies again and again, sometimes there is a good reason behind why he can’t tell the full story."

“But it is the right of the public to criticise any politician and politicians cannot avoid that,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • NY sisters inspired by Khmer heritage

    Growing up in Brooklyn, New York, Cambodian-American sisters Edo and Eyen Chorm have always felt a deep affinity for their Cambodian heritage and roots. When the pair launched their own EdoEyen namesake jewellery brand in June, 2020, they leaned heavily into designs inspired by ancient Khmer

  • Schools drawn into Manet degree row

    Prime Minister Hun Sen stepped into the Hun Manet-Sam Rainsy war of words over the validity of Manet’s degree from the US Military Academy at West Point, set off by Rainsy’s claims that Manet had received a “second-class degree” or “honorary degree”. Hun

  • Cambodia records first Omicron community case

    The Ministry of Health on January 9 reported 30 new Covid-19 cases, 29 of which were imported and all were confirmed to be the Omicron variant. The ministry also reported 11 recoveries and no new deaths. Earlier on January 9, the ministry also announced that it had detected the Kingdom's

  • The effects of the USD interest rate hike on Cambodian economy

    Experts weigh in on the effect of a potential interest rate expansion by the US Federal Reserve on a highly dollarised Cambodia Anticipation of the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike in March is putting developing economies on edge, a recent blog post by

  • PM eyes Myanmar peace troika

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has suggested that ASEAN member states establish a tripartite committee or diplomatic troika consisting of representatives from Cambodia, Brunei and Indonesia that would be tasked with mediating a ceasefire in Myanmar. The premier also requested that Nippon Foundation chairman Yohei Sasakawa

  • Kampot tourism quay ‘90% done’

    Construction on Kampot International Tourism Port – a 4ha quay in Teuk Chhou district about 6km west of Kampot town – has fallen off track, reaching 90 per cent completion, according to a senior Ministry of Tourism official last week. The project is now planned to be finished