Self-exiled opposition senator Thak Lany last month resigned from her position as a member of the standing committee and board of directors of the Sam Rainsy Party (SRP), the same day three other opposition lawmakers left their party roles, a letter made public on Friday revealed.
The letter – submitted to SRP acting president Teav Vannol – became public a few weeks after the February 23 resignations of her three fellow lawmakers, which came on the heels of controversial amendments to the Law on Political Parties being approved by the National Assembly. Lany resigned the same day, citing “personal reasons”.
Neither Lany nor Vannol could be reached yesterday.
The revamped law, which is expected to be approved by Senate President Say Chhum soon, stipulates that the Supreme Court can dissolve parties if people in leadership positions have been convicted for criminal offenses.
CNRP leader Sam Rainsy cited the amendments’ passage in resigning his position and party membership on February 11.
In the past year, each of the lawmakers who resigned had been sentenced in relation to criminal cases widely believed politically motivated.
While opposition lawmakers Hong Sok Hour, Um Sam An and Meach Sovannara were jailed, Lany fled to Sweden after Prime Minister Hun Sen sued her in July for allegedly accusing him of being behind the murder of political analyst Kem Ley.
She was sentenced in absentia to 18 months on November 17 on incitement and defamation charges.