Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Samrin rejects CNRP right to grill ministers

Samrin rejects CNRP right to grill ministers

CNRP lawmaker Son Chhay, seen speaking at a party event last year, has had requests summoning two ministers to the National Assembly blocked by the body’s CPP president.
CNRP lawmaker Son Chhay, seen speaking at a party event last year, has had requests summoning two ministers to the National Assembly blocked by the body’s CPP president. Photo supplied

Samrin rejects CNRP right to grill ministers

National Assembly President Heng Samrin suspended a request from a CNRP lawmaker to question the minister of mines and energy and the minister of labour, saying no such requests would be forwarded until the opposition had shown it was ready to “work together”, a spokesman said yesterday.

National Assembly spokesman Leng Peng Long said Samrin last week received a request from Cambodia National Rescue Party chief whip Son Chhay to call Mines Minister Suy Sem and Labour Minister Ith Sam Heng to the assembly for questioning, but the requests were suspended.

Under the constitution, lawmakers have the right to call on ministers to respond to questions about their work, but a previous CNRP plan to summon three ministers was quashed in February by Prime Minister Hun Sen at a time of heightened political tensions. The premier said at the time that the summonses would not be honoured because the opposition had not “respected the law” by boycotting a parliamentary vote stripping the party of its official minority status.

Peng Long’s explanation for the suspension yesterday followed similar lines, with the spokesman saying it had been communicated that such requests would not be forwarded until the CNRP shows a “real willingness” to come to the assembly in a “spirit” of dialogue.

“That’s the position of the National Assembly president and Prime Minister Hun Sen,” he said, without explaining the legal basis for suspending the constitutionally protected right. “We suspended the procedure until we discover that the CNRP has a real willingness to have a dialogue . . . [If] both parties agree to work together . . . we will think [about it].”

Chhay couldn’t be reached for comment yesterday.

Late last month, Chhay said he had planned to summon Suy Sem for questioning in parliament after he failed to respond to his inquiries in writing regarding the export of silica sand. He also said he would summon Ith Sam Heng over issues related to migrant workers in Thailand.

MOST VIEWED

  • No payment required for travellers taking rapid Covid tests on arrival

    Ministry of Health officials said there would be no payment required for the rapid Covid-19 tests given to travellers who arrive in Cambodia from November 15 onwards after the quarantine requirement is lifted for fully vaccinated people. Health ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine told The Post on

  • General’s gun smuggling ring busted

    The Military Police sent six military officers to court on November 22 to face prosecution for possession of 105 illegal rifles and arms smuggling, while investigators say they are still hunting down additional accomplices. Sao Sokha, deputy commander of the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces and commander of

  • Prince Norodom Ranariddh passes away at 77

    Prince Norodom Ranariddh, the second son of the late King Father Norodom Sihanouk and former First Prime Minister of Cambodia, has passed away in France at the age of 77. “Samdech Krom Preah Norodom Ranariddh has passed away this morning in France just after 9am Paris-time,”

  • More Cambodians studying in US

    The number of Cambodian students studying at US colleges and universities in 2020-21 increased by 14.3 per cent over the previous year despite the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a recent US government report. The 2021 Open Doors report on International Educational Exchange showed that 848 Cambodian students studied

  • Cambodia, Thailand to discuss border reopening

    Cambodian authorities from provinces along the Cambodia-Thailand border will meet with Thai counterparts to discuss reopening border checkpoints to facilitate travel, transfer of products and cross-border trade between the two countries. Banteay Meanchey provincial deputy governor Ly Sary said on November 22 that the provincial administration

  • Police arrest Canadian with 167kg of drugs

    The Phnom Penh Municipal Court on November 15 placed a Canadian national in pre-trial detention in connection with smuggling and possessing 167kg of illegal drugs. Deputy National Police chief in charge of anti-drug enforcement Mak Chito told The Post on November 15 that the man was arrested