Cambodian election turnout 75%

July 31, 2008 at 7:10 am Leave a comment

The Manila Times – July 31, 2008

PHNOM PENH: Turnout in Cambodia’s weekend election was a “good figure” at 75 percent, the country’s election committee said Wednesday, amid opposition rejections of the results and demands for a re-vote.

More than 6 million out of 8.1 million eligible voters cast ballots in Sunday’s election.

Prime Minister Hun Sen’s ruling Cambodian People’s Party has claimed a landslide victory, saying it captured at least 90 of the 123 seats in parliament.

Although turnout fell from the 83 percent who voted in the country’s previous poll in 2003, Tep Nytha, secretary-general of the National Election Committee (NEC), said there was still good voter participation.

“Generally, when the number of voters casting ballots is 70-percent up, it is a good figure. In some countries, the percentage of voters is only around 60 percent,” he said.

Opposition leader Sam Rainsy has estimated that one million of the registered voters were cut from the rolls and has demanded a re-vote.

But European Union election observers have said only about 50,000 could not find their names registered when they attempted to vote.

The NEC has denied opposition allegations that voters were left off the rolls on purpose.

International monitors said Tuesday that the election was flawed and did not meet key standards, despite a more peaceful campaign and improvements in the electoral process.

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