Voters of at least one commune in Prime Minister Hun Sen’s electoral province, Kandal, say they face threats and intimidation and a sophisticated ruling party network ahead of elections.
If they don’t vote for the Cambodian People’s Party, they say, it will be difficult for them to live. The voters of Preak Ambel commune said CPP officials have structured a wide-sweeping network in groups of 10 to control vote-buying and other acts to influence voters.
Farmer Kim Srun, 70, said villagers have been told that they must vote for the CPP or “there would be difficulty to certify documents, such as marriage and ceremonies.”
He was appointed as a CPP group leader over the past two months, receiving a T-shirt and cap.
Of 25,000 people living in Prek Ambel, about 15,000 people are eligible to vote.
Hem Kit, a villager who had just moved into the area from Kampong Speu province, said it had been difficult for him to register.
The Committee for Free and Fair Elections has not reported any serious irregularities in the area.
CPP commune chief Pech Kroeun denied any intimidation of voters.