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New UNDP Country Director Meets Assembly

National Assembly President Heng Samrin met with the Country Director of UNDP Cambodia on Thursday, urging her to help train more experts in law and other legislative measures.

“Our National Assembly faces a lack of experts in international law, constitutional law, business law, administrative law, labor law and [information technology],” said Cheam Yiep, a Cambodian People’s Party lawmaker. “So the National Assembly needs training in these fields.”

Elena Tichenko became the Country Director of UNDP Cambodia last week, replacing Jo Scheuer.

Son Chhay, a lawmaker for the opposition Sam Rainsy Party, said the National Assembly lacks the staff to help opposition lawmakers serve their constituents. Employees of the National Assembly are afraid to cross the ruling party, he said.

“We have difficulties researching various documents concerning the law, economy, culture, communication and mining,” he said.

The UNDP puts more than $2 million a year into training and seminars, but after 10 years of such support, the legislative body has not improved, Son Chhay said.