Roundup: Cambodia's Ruling Party Wins Landslide Victory in Senate Election

PHNOM PENH-- The ruling Cambodian People's Party (CPP) won a sweeping victory in the fifth election for the country's Senate, or the upper house of the parliament, on Sunday, a party spokesperson said.

CPP spokesperson Sok Eysan, citing preliminary results, said the CPP won a great majority of the votes in the election.

"The CPP won at least 50 of the 58 Senate seats up for grabs, or more than 80 percent of the total votes," he told Xinhua.

"This is another great success for the CPP after we won a landslide victory in the general election in July 2023," the spokesperson said.

He confirmed that former Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen, the 71-year-old president of the CPP, will take over as the president of the Senate after the election, who would be acting head of state when the king is overseas.

Held every six years, the Senate election is by a non-universal suffrage as only members of the National Assembly, or the lower house, and commune councilors across the Southeast Asian country are eligible to cast ballots.

The Senate has 62 seats, but the vote was held for 58 seats as two senators will be appointed by Cambodian King Norodom Sihamoni and two others by the National Assembly.

Four political parties took part in Sunday's election. They were the CPP, the royalist Funcinpec Party, the Khmer Will Party and the Nation Power Party.

The National Election Committee (NEC) said 11,730, or 99.86 percent, of the 11,747 eligible voters (125 National Assembly members and 11,622 commune councilors) voted in Sunday's election at a total of 33 polling stations across the country.

NEC preliminary results showed that the CPP received 10,052 votes, the Khmer Will Party earned 1,394 votes, the Nation Power Party gained 234 votes, and the royalist Funcinpec Party got 19 votes.

NEC chief Prach Chan said temporary results will be released on Feb. 29 and the official ones with allocation of seats will be announced between March 4 and 6 if there is no complaint filed by any political party against the results.

"Overall, the election was conducted smoothly, with no any reports of violence or intimidation," he said in a press briefing. "It was a free and fair election for all contesting political parties."

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