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Ruling Party Does Poorly in Evaluation of Campaign Promises

An election campaign poster of Prime Minister Hun Sen's ruling Cambodian People's Party hangs on the back of a motorized rickshaw parked at a blocked street in front of the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh.
PHNOM PENH - University students and NGO representatives met on Monday to evaluate how well the ruling Cambodian People’s Party has kept its campaign promises from 2008, with a great majority saying they thought the CPP had done very little.

Two out of three participants said the ruling party had not done a good job keeping its promises from the 2008 campaign, after which the ruling party swept up 90 of 123 National Assembly seats. A handful of participants said the CPP had accomplished an “average” amount. No participants thought the CPP had done nearly all it had promised before that election.

The conference, which was organized by the Committee for Free and Fair Elections and included about 80 participants, comes ahead of the July 28 national elections, which will be preceded by a monthlong campaign period. Participants discussed 34 of 48 specific promises made by the ruling party in the run-up to the 2008 polls.

Koul Panha, executive director of Comfrel, said the evaluation should act as a reminder to politicians, especially those of the CPP, to be mindful of their promises. Results of the evaluation will be sent to other NGOs and ruling party officials and will be disseminated for further discussion on social media, he said.

Government spokesman Phay Siphan dismissed the evaluation, saying the selection sample was not a valid representation of the electorate.