The National Election Committee (NEC) has announced that it will hold a meeting with stakeholders to focus on releasing the schedule for the first council elections in recently formed municipal and district territories on January 16, when the committee announces the latest voter list and commences the 10-day period to file complaints.
The meeting will discuss details of the schedule for the election of the councils of Akrey khsat and Sampov Poun towns in Kandal province; Odong Me Chey town and Samaki Monichey district in Kampong Speu province; and O’Krieng Senchey district of Kratie province.
Prime Minister Hun Sen issued a sub-decree to establish the three new towns and two districts on December 23, 2022.
Som Sorida, deputy secretary-general and spokesman for the NEC, stated that there are two factors that can lead the NEC to organise off-year elections for council members: In cases where the council is dissolved before its mandate and the current situation where the election must be organised in response to the creation of new municipalities and districts.
“The elections in the three towns and two districts are cases of newly formed territories. According to the law, when there are newly formed municipalities and districts, the NEC will have to hold new elections,” Sorida said.
Citing the calendar released by the NEC, Sorida said the five new municipal and district council elections are scheduled to be held on April 9.
“We cannot delay the elections because they would then be too close to the parliamentary election,” he told The Post.
The meeting to be held on January 16 will be chaired by NEC vice-president Nuth Sokhom. At the meeting, the NEC will provide the dates for the registration process for domestic and international observers, registration for local and international journalists, registration of political parties and candidates and registration of political party agents.
The NEC also said that it had finalised the latest official voter list including the newly registered voters for 2022, and called on citizens to review the list by verifying their personal data in accordance with their identity card or certified documents that are eligible for us as ID for the election.
In cases where the data in the voter list is incorrect and not consistent with the ID card or identification documents, citizens can complain to the commune council where they live in the 10 days from January 14-23.
Citizens can also file complaints against one or more people who they believe do not have sufficient eligibility to vote but still have their names on the voter list, but the complainant must have clear documentation to prove it.