Hun Manet to be PM in August

Hun Manet (C), commander of the Royal Cambodian Army and eldest son of Prime Minister Hun Sen, gestures after he casts his vote at a polling station in Phnom Penh on July 23, 2023. Photo by -STR / AFP

PHNOM PENH  – Hun Manet is to become Cambodia’s new prime minister after his father Hun Sen resigned and signalled a generational change in government. 

Hun Sen announced on July 26 that he will be caretaker prime minister until Hun Manet takes over on August 22.  This will take place after the King formally orders the appointment of a new prime minister for the seventh mandate on August 7.

Hun Sen said there would be a period of instability if he remained in the job for another year or two and then resigned. It was necessary for a new cabinet, mostly of young people, to get the tasks they will be responsible for in the future.

The situation required the preparation of the Royal Government from the beginning of this mandate to ensure its smooth running without interruption.

Hun Sen said he did not want analysts and foreign media to continue to analyse Hun Manet's ability or ask when he would become PM, so he let him do the job from the beginning of this term.

Hun Sen said he will replace Sy Chhum as Senate President in the new legislature after the election of the Senate on February 25, next year.

Hun Sen said he would stay as president of the ruling Cambodian People's Party. 

Hun Sen said Hun Manet went through at least four stages on the path to the prime ministership: internal party approval, election to parliament through general elections, appointment by the King to form the Royal Government,  and pass the approval of the National Assembly.

Hun Manet's inauguration as PM did not require any foreign support. Support from the people was enough, he said.

Hun Sen thanked the opposition for trying to insult him and Hun Manet until the CPP received more than 82 percent of the turnout.

The NEC on July 26 released the primary result of the general election, showing that the CPP received 6,398,193 votes.

The second largest party was Prince Norodom Chakravuth’s Funcinpec, receiving 716,443 votes.

An unofficial calculation predicts that the CPP will pick up 120 National Assembly seats and Funcinpec will get five.

He will also serve as president of the High Privy Council with  Heng Samrin, Sar Kheng, Tea Banh and Men Sam An as members.

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