The National Election Committee said Monday it hoped to
reduce the price of transportation during the election period by appealing to
the Ministry of Transportation and individual transport companies, in a bid to
help impoverished voters reach their homes to vote.
Tep Nitha, secretary-general of NEC, told reporters Monday
the committee would send letters to relevant ministries and companies
requesting help in reducing travel costs for voters ahead of and after Election
Day, July 27.
Muth Chantha, spokesman for the Norodom Ranariddh Party,
said most factory workers were not going to vote because they did not have
enough money for transportation, and the party had requested the NEC help with
Transportation prices generally increase during national
ceremonies and elections.
About 340,000 factory workers live in Phnom Penh, but most of them come from the
provinces, where they are registered to vote. Many are feeling the bite of the
rising costs of goods and fuel, which could prevent them from voting.
In order to help them vote, workers from neighboring
provinces or Phnom Penh
will be given Election Day off to vote. Those from Kandal, Kampong Speu and
Kampong Chhnang provinces will have two days off, and those from farther-flung
provinces will have three days off.
Chum Iek, secretary of state for the Ministry of Transportation,
free-market policies made it difficult to require companies to lower costs, but
the ministry would seek their help after receiving an official request from the
Union leaders have said in the past they hope to charter
transportation to bring workers to vote, but those unions are typically
party-aligned, and the busing of voters on Election Day by political parties is
illegal, Tep Nitha said.