Kem Sokha, whose Human Rights Party gained three National
Assembly seats in July’s election, becoming a part of the opposition, said
Thursday he was disappointed in the slow pace of Cambodian reform and the
absence of the checks and balances that make democracies functional.
Fifteen years of reform had failed to bring true democratic
reform, he said, as the ruling Cambodian People’s Party, under the rule of
Prime Minister Hun Sen, controlled all branches of government.
“There are no checks and balances,” Kem Sokha said, as a
guest on “Hello VOA,” leading to the loss of representation for “about half a
The CPP won a commanding 90 seats in the 2008 National
Assembly election, and it has put party members as the head of each of the body’s
Kem Sokha said that a rule of the National Assembly
requiring 11 parliamentarians to form in order for one member to address the
body was a regression “toward communism, like the ‘80s.”
Democracy require political freedom, economic freedom and
social freedom, he said, adding that the system of administration in Cambodia
should also change, graduating out of the hands of a single leader, such as Hun
“It is now just based on one individual, who, when he wants
something, they do, and when he does not want to do, they do not do,” he said.
The CPP won their seats through fear, gift-giving,
vote-buying, threats and fraud, he said, adding that if a neutral election
committee from abroad were to organize the elections, the ruling party would
The Human Rights Party is ready to join the main opposition
party, of Sam Rainsy, for future elections, he said, denying rumors he would
challenge Sam Rainsy for the presidency.