Speech and Selected Comments to the Meeting in Commemoration of the 66th Founding Anniversary of the Cambodian People’s Party (26 June 1951 – 28 June 2017)

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[Unofficial Translation]

CNV: 

  • Respected Samdech Preah Akka Moha Sanga Raja Tibadei, Samdech Preah Sanga Raja, and Buddhist monks,
  • Senior Directors and Leaders of Islamists,
  • Samdech, Excellencies, Ladies, Gentlemen, National and International Guests,
  • Members of the Meeting, and Dear Compatriots,

28 June 2017 is the 66th founding anniversary of the Cambodian People’s Party, originally the Khmer Revolutionary Party, to lead the struggle to gain independence from colonialism for our nation, motherland, and people. From the day of its inception to the present, the Cambodian People’s Party adheres steadfastly its nature as a party belongs to the people, by the people and for the people. The party has scored numerous major and historic achievements for our nation. This has brought about people’s supports and offered the Cambodian People’s Party a leadership role for the past over 38 years.

We are celebrating this memorial anniversary in deep gratitude of uncountable cadres, soldiers, and people, who sacrificed heroically in every stage for independence, peace, freedom, sovereignty, territorial integrity, and progress of the motherland. This anniversary takes place in a situation that the Kingdom of Cambodia is enjoying full peace, firm political stability, and energetic progress in all fields, and while people are hailing success of the fourth-term commune/Sangkat council elections held recently on 4 June 2017.

In this auspicious occasion, we are expressing our profound loyalty and gratitude to the most revered Preah Karuna Preah Bat Samdech Preah Norodom Sihamoni, King of Cambodia, and Samdech Preah Mohaksatrei Monineat Sihanouk, the Cambodian National Heroic Queen Mother in freedom, dignity, and happiness, for staying in the throne as cool shade of every Cambodian people. We wish Their Majesties good health, strength, intelligence, and longevity, to stay as forever-cool shade for every Cambodian.

In the last 66 years, Cambodia went through various historical stages, in which part of them are to be proud of, part of them required flexibility, and part of them had been difficult, and the most dangerous too. No matter what circumstance it was in, the Cambodian People’s Party adheres always to its aim and ideal to stand with our people, to overcome every obstacle, to sacrifice without hesitation for a Cambodia of independence, peace, freedom, democracy, neutrality, and social progress. When the country fell into disaster created by the regime of Pol Pot’s genocide, the Cambodian People’s Party was the only political force that stood up and struggled to lead out people to fight and topple the brutal regime on 7 January 1979. The party saved the country in a timely manner. The great victory of 7 January 1979 closed Cambodia’s darkest chapter and ushered in a new era of illumination and hope. The people of Cambodia – those suffered under the genocidal regime as well as those belong to younger generation – have always remembered great meaning of this historic victory.

Over the past 38 years of new era, the Cambodian People’s Party exercised its leadership in national defense, and restoration of our country from scratch in a state of peace and war mingling together, in addition to inhumane and unjust political and economic blockades. Despites uncountable obstacles and difficulties, the Cambodian People’s Party has maintained its just course always to prevent the return of the genocidal regime, to defend rebirth of our nation, to bring back to people rights, freedom, democracy, honor, and dignity that they lost totally under the Pol Pot’s regime. The party has restored and rebuilt the country’s social and economic condition to achieve transformation and progress stage after stage, while gradually stabilizing our people’s living condition.

Adhering firmly to principle of national solidarity, the Cambodian People’s Party initiated negotiations in search for peace and national reconciliation to end protracted war that threatened people’s everyday life and hindered the country’s development. Should there be no central force as the Cambodian People’s Party in search for pace and national reconciliation, there would not be Paris Peace Agreement on the Cambodian problem on 23 October 1991, and there would not be the 1993-Constitution, and/or the second Kingdom as we do in the present.

It was a historical fact and no one could denature it. However, the war just ended completely through win-win policy put out by the Cambodian People’s Party to dissolve the Khmer Rouge organization politically and militarily. That has created full peace in the whole nation. Cambodia became one united nation from end of 1998. Peace has provided the most opportune and unprecedented moments for the people of Cambodia to develop their socio-economic lives and to prop up their living conditions.

Under the light of peace over the past nearly two decades, Cambodia has scored numerous transformations that are positive and to be proud of, especially in the socio-economic field. Through sustainably high economic growth and equitable distribution of its fruit, people’s poverty has been reduced and people’s living condition has been improved. Cambodia has stepped out of pool of low income countries to become one in pool of lower-middle income countries. We are making every effort to realize our vision of becoming a higher-middle income country by 2030 and a high-income country by 2050. Cambodia is taking active part with equal right and footing in international affairs. Cambodia, which before received help of the UN peacekeepers, is now a model country that sends its forces to serve in the UN peacekeeping operations in various countries.

Based on these achievements, we can affirm that the past that were full of fears, tragedies, divisions, and losses suffered by our people has ended. At present, our people are living in a motherland that is enjoying full peace, harmony, hope, and chances for everyone, especially those people belong to younger generation. The Cambodian People’s Party, with support rendered by people in the whole country, has an obligation to continue to safeguard resolutely long lasting national achievements, to make further progresses, and to allow no political force or ill willed circles to destroy them.

These brilliant achievements clearly reflect firm leadership of the Cambodian People’s Party, which has a correct political platform, wide ranging support from the people, civil servants and armed forces, strict and disciplinary working manner, human resource with virtue, capacity, conscience of responsibility, and firm internal solidarity. These are factors to win successes and lessons to learn from leadership of the party, for which the whole party must hold tightly and make further efforts to strengthen and expand to garner more people’s supports and trusts.

Dear Meeting Participants,
Dear Compatriots,

In our national advancement, the fourth-term commune/Sangkat council elections on 4 June 2017 held with success in an environment of neutrality, freedom, and safety. Great number of people flocked together to cast their vote in dignity, joy and at own free will to choose councilors in their commune/Sangkat. The elections observers – national and international, and the people in the whole country, assessed that they were genuinely free, fair, and just elections. Success of the elections is a new historic achievement of the Cambodian people in strengthening further peace, foundation of democracy, and socio-economic development.

The brilliant victory of the Cambodian People’s Party in the fourth-term commune/Sangkat elections further indicates that the Cambodian people needs leadership role of the Cambodian People’s Party to guarantee and keep peace, political stability, and national development. The victory has guaranteed for the Cambodian People’s Party a firm base to advance to score further victories in the forthcoming fourth-legislative senate elections in early 2018, and the sixth-legislative general elections in July 2018. It has also failed attempts by ill willed circles to topple the Cambodian People’s Party.

On behalf of the permanent committee of the Central Committee, I wish to express my deepest respect and gratitude to members of the party, youth, and compatriots in all walks of life for their steadfast believes in leadership, and for voting overwhelmingly in support of the Cambodian People’s Party. Responding to such trust, the party is determined to continue making full efforts to implement to a great success its proclaimed commune/Sangkat development policies for 2017-2022. That would ensure commune/Sangkat in the whole country firm solidarity, peace, order, safety, equality before the law, good public services, sufficient infrastructure, food security, water security, energy security, and socio-economic progress.

The Cambodian People’s Party adheres strictly to principles of solidarity in whole nation irrespective of political tendencies, pasts, genders, faiths, religions, races, and social positions, to strand force together to defend independence, sovereignty, and long lasting territorial integrity to continue building and developing progress of our nation as other countries do in the region. This effort should be of peace, civilization, and love, and suffer no resurrection of genocide, and national division as in the pasts, so that our people will live in happiness and harmony.

Based on this principle, the Cambodian People’s Party resolutely defends peace and political stability that are essential conditions to guarantee peaceful life and sustainable development of our people. We are resolutely against acts of coloring, insulting, twisting the truth, disdaining the Cambodian People’s Party, which is an act of instigating national division, creating social upheaval, and, in the end, pushing the country into a new turmoil.

The Cambodian People’s Party is determined to build and strengthen people’s national defense and security foundations, to defend the Constitutional monarchy and a political system of pluralistic liberal democracy, to strengthen respect and rule of law, to guarantee justice for all, and to prevent all sorts of impunity and violence. In this sense, the party continues to implement actively its political platform and the Royal Government’s rectangular strategy phase iii, especially to promote further state reforms and to effectively implement policies, and to strengthen measures to put an end to negative social issues in response to people’s suggestions, aspirations, and concerns.

The Cambodian People’s Party continues to bolster faithful collaborations with political parties, civil society organizations, and other circles in society who bear faithfulness and true will in keeping sustainably good political environment, especially for the forthcoming national elections in 2018, while augmenting trusts of local and foreign investors to continue socio-economic development and improvement of people’s living condition. In this spirit, the Cambodian People’s Party believes that countries and international organizations will continue to respect truly Cambodia’s independence and sovereignty, to make no interference in its internal affairs, to respect its rights to decide and will of the Cambodian people to live in peace, friendship, fraternity, and cooperation with nations in the world.

Dear Meeting Participants,
Dear Compatriots,

On this auspicious occasion, on behalf of Samdech Akka Moha Punhea Chakrei Heng Samrin, leaders of the Cambodian People’s Party, and my own self, I am calling on members of the party, and compatriots to continue to strand together as one family under the Constitution to keep and expand national achievements. We must especially keep long lasting peace, which is the greatest and most invaluable achievement. We must remember that national division and protracted internal wars have been the primary causes of serious mistakes in political leadership in the pasts, when politicians only thought of own interests, neglected those of the nation and people, brought about heinous disaster for our nation, and lost chances of dozens of years to build the country.

Therefore, we must not forget and track on suffering footpath again. We must try to take back our losing time. In this advancement, every party organization and officials at all levels, must promote their exemplary models in implementing principle and policies of the Royal Government in conformity with this approach of “daring to think, to act, and to be responsible.” We must strive to widen our good deeds and eliminate inactive happenings. We must not allow them to destroy the party’s supreme course. We should clearly understand that “when people believe in the party’s leadership, the party must uphold obligation and responsibility for them in return.” This relation binds the party and its people together. Results of the fourth commune/Sangkat elections is a firm foundation and gives the party valuable lessons in strengthening actions towards victory in the forthcoming sixth legislative National Assembly elections in 2018.

[Start of Impromptu Comments]

CPP’s Victory Come from People’s Trust

Dear meeting participants, in addition to the prepared text, I wish to take this opportune moment to hail together with our compatriots, especially members of the Cambodian People’s Party, a great victory that over 50% of voters voted for the party. Responding to our people’s trust, we must provide them with our responsibility for their livelihood and basic needs, especially through household economic development […]

Party Officials, Organizations to Keep Peace, Development, for People’s Interest

It is required that our party officials and organizations at every level to act in tandem to advance together. We cannot sit and wait for miracle to happen from our pride in the past. We have already included various objectives in our roadmaps per sectors and sub-sectors. The party cannot abandon its pride in building peace and securing development. The party has started from trading lives to save the country, to make essential transformation from genocide to revival, from war, from half-war and half-peace, from entire war, from war and negotiation phases, to achieving the Paris Peace Agreement, and finally implementation of win-win policy to unify the country for the first time in hundreds of years.

We cannot let go of things that we have achieved. They are people’s interests. We have built the country from scratch, 100% poverty. Now we have brought the country’s poverty down to within 13%. We have made efforts to move our country from one of the least developed countries list to one in the lower-middle income ones. We have clear objectives to bring our country into high-middle income list by 2030 and high-income list by 2050.

Policies in Every Field for Future of Youth

We have issued policies in every field – industry, agriculture, and those in labor to expand space for the future of our youth. We have built numerous schools on this land. That is partly how we get ready for the future of our youth. Youth in the present time are more fortunate than their former generations, who suffered war consequences and faced up with death threat every day. I wish to take this opportune moment to appeal to our youth and members of the party to continue to take advancing actions on behalf of those who take pride for building peace, national reconciliation, and for the reconstruction of our country from scratch to the present development.

CPP to Defend Peace, Constitutional Monarchy, and HM the King

In relation to this issue, we cannot accept their acts of insulting, contempt, and coloring. I wish to affirm to everyone here that history is written by winners. Those who lose will not have chance to write it. You may remember that in between 1953 and 1970, the one who wrote our history was the Sangkum Reastr Niyum, led by Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk, the King Father. In just one day, on 18 March 1970, Lon Nol launched a successful coup. They had become winners. They started writing history and blamed Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk for treason. Lon Nol became a patriot … Should others win, they will certainly make Sam Sari, Soueng Ngoc Thanh, Sim Var statesmen, national heroes and our King Father Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk would be a traitor once again. It is in this meaning that we must be aware that our obligation is to defend not only the party but also safeguard peace, constitutional monarchy, the throne, HM the King. This is a heavy task but it is a pride that the party has been taking and continued to do so.

Interior to Take Action on Situation Room on Elections

… There are some issues to address in the immediate future. What is the situation room? In recent days, the situation room has caused disturbances on results of the elections. Has the situation room registered in the Ministry of Interior, or not? I am talking in my capacity as Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia, who has had to implement the law … the “situation room” sent out their opinion, which was nothing less than a hit on NEC. Have they rights to set up such places? It is like a commanding headquarters of color revolution principle. If it was so, the Ministry of Interior must take urgent measures to inspect what they had done under the pretext of observing the elections. The elections results were welcomed by the whole nation, and numerous political parties. They also enjoyed the observation, acceptance, and evaluation of national and international observers.

A Convict Affiliates Oneself to Political Party

On one hand, they have declared that they have won (the elections) but one another they attacked the Cambodian People’s Party and the National Elections Committee. What is it that they are truly? I wish to see that we can make this thing clear. We must make it clear. (Is it legal for) a convict to affiliate oneself with a political party. If there are not enough clauses about this issue, we may have to amend the law on political party […] the person has appeared without shame here. Would this be a legal matter? A convict would enjoy no voting right. Why in this case a convict becomes someone who causes one issue after the other endlessly?

I propose to the members of the National Assembly from the Cambodian People’s Party to review and propose amendment the law on political party in such a way that the convict would not be able to act like this. This is a legal matter and we cannot overlook it in a democratic process. We are afraid of anyone but we do not wish to see that someone to cause trouble to national achievements. If s/he dares, the door is open […]

No More Insistence on Elections Results

I think that we all must abide by the law … We must accept the elections results. Every time there is an election, they always insist until their goal is achieved. I am asking Samdech Krola Haom Sar Kheng to firstly review the situation room, whether it is legal or illegal, and what kind of punishment would it receive. We have law on the management of non-governmental organizations. The National Elections Committee clearly affirmed that should a TV and/or radio station sell their airtime for anyone political party, they must do the same to others. The Cambodian People’s Party bought airtime from so many TV during the campaigns. They did not buy them but they issue a statement criticizing other for doing so. We will not accept such insult and contempt. Would they be smart enough to refuse their seats … normally, they would say yes to two things and no to one thing. The two “yes” are to take the seats and salary. One “no” was that they insist of not approving unless their goal is met. We will not accept that … I think that they would not leave us in peace. We must stand up and overcome their perfidious tricks […]

Do Not Underestimate Smaller Parties

War would come because of their tongues that insult the Cambodian People’s Party. We never look down upon parties because of its sizes. Every party has equal right. We never have ill contempt on anyone political party. We always offer cooperation to every party, those with and without seats in the National Assembly. I could never imagine that some, even their parties are not yet winning, looked down on other smaller parties. The Cambodian People’s Party calls on its members not to look down on other parties, though their political tendencies may not be similar to and their supporters were in smaller number to ours. It is a virtue of unity … We recognize that we have not yet fulfilled every aspiration of the people and our officials are not perfect. It is in this understanding that we initiated reforms and monitor responsibilities of every officials. However, words that coming out of (the opposition mouths) were instigations for divisions, and pushing the country into unrest. I am declaring that we will not allow anyone to destroy our peace.

[End of Impromptu]

On this occasion, on behalf of the Cambodian people, I am expressing my deep thank for friendly countries, foreign partners and international organizations for the valuable contributions they made in supporting the just course of our people and are continuing to bolster and expand fruitful cooperation with the Kingdom of Cambodia. Those significant contributions are indispensable for peace, democracy, and development in Cambodia.

Finally, in commemoration of the 66th founding anniversary of the Cambodian People’s Party, please allow me to wish Samdech Preah Sanga Raja, Buddhist monks, and Samdech, Excellencies, Lok Chumteavs, Ladies, Gentlemen, leaders of Islamism, national and international guests, and the meeting members and compatriots, peace, happiness and prosperity./.