banter is only to be expected, but opposition leader Sam Rainsy has raised the
game by declaring he will redistribute the ill-gotten gains of corrupt
pro-government tycoons if his party wins July's national elections.
Cambodian People's Party-affiliated
Okhna, tycoons and businessmen beware: on May 12 Rainsy announced that he
"will give back to the nation, give back to the victims of land grabbing,
return to the state millions of hectares of land that have been illegally sold
Rainsy alleges that by
maintaining close ties with the ruling CPP - in particular with Prime Minister
Hun Sen - powerful individuals have been able to acquire state land illegally
through secretive land swaps or grab land from poor farmers.
"Any new government led
by me, Sam Rainsy, will confiscate land, forests, mountains, beaches and
islands which have been sold to foreign companies by the CPP," Rainsy
said. "We will take them back for the nation and the people. We do not
recognize the contracts issued by Hun Sen's government as they have signed away
our lands to evil companies."
This policy of land redistribution
is "unsustainable" and will "bring problems for the Cambodian
people," Information Minister and CPP spokesman Khieu Kanharith said on