Cambodia’s king endorses Hun Manet as next prime minister

Bangkok, Aug 7 (EFE).- Cambodia’s King Norodom Sihamoni on Monday issued a royal decree officially endorsing Hun Manet as the next prime minister of the country.

The decree was another step forward in the transition of power in Cambodia following the recent resignation of Hun Manet’s father, Hun Sen, 71, who has ruled the Southeast Asian nation with an iron fist for almost four decades.

“The designated prime minister is tasked with forming a new government pending a vote of confidence at the National Assembly,” the decree said.

The vote is expected to take place on Aug. 22 and seen as a mere procedure, given the dominance of the CPP in the legislature.

New to politics, army commander Hun Manet, 45, led the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) list in Phnom Penh during the July 23 general election.

Headed by Hun Sen, the CPP swept the polls as expected, winning 120 of the 125 seats in parliament during the election that was widely condemned as a sham.

Many countries and agencies such as the United States, the United Nations and the European Union criticized the poll for lacking a credible opposition due to the Candlelight Party being barred from running, and the censorship of independent media and the harassment and jailing of dissidents, among other reasons.

Following his victory, Hun Sen, who came to power in Cambodia in 1985, announced his retirement on July 26 and the transfer of power to his eldest son, a four-star general trained at the US Military Academy at West Point.

It is expected that with the power transition from father to son, there will also be a reform in the ministries to bring in a new generation of Cambodian politicians, many of them children and relatives of current representatives. EFE


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