|Voters line up in front of polling station|
|A man dropped his ballot into the box|
Electoral fraud is not uncommon in many countries around the world, but it has happened as isolated and unconventional. Usually election fraud has occurred at counting and projecting a final result or the ruling parties has gained more media's access than the others such as the election disputes in Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Former Yugoslavia, Venezuela, Liberia, Peru, Malaysia, Kanya and so on. Distinctly, the election fraud in Cambodia has happened as conventional and systematic fraud rarely seen in any country in this world. Because the whole system of electoral process in Cambodia is deeply flaw from the beginning of registration and election campaigns to announcement of the final results.
The whole election process has been marred by violence, intimidation, unequal media access, vote buying or bride, and the bias of the NEC. during the one month campaigns, the opposition supporters were intimidated, threatened, disrupted, and abused by the ruling party, the CPP. Many opposition activists were injured by throwing stones or other objects at, threatened by firing at the headquarter office, verbal and physical abused when they distributed the party policy fliers, and disrupted campaign processions by using loud speakers or to interrupt the processions from moving forward smoothly.
At the same time, during the election campaigns, only the ruling party, the CPP had access to TV stations. No other parties were allowed to broadcast their policies on any TV except 15 minutes time slot each day on the TVK supervised by the NEC. All TVs and most radios have not only covered the CPP's campaigns but helped the CPP by broadcasting only negative news from the oppositions and positive news from the CPP regardless of those news are reliable or not. It was very shameful to all TV stations in the country when the opposition leader had returned home from his exile with tens of thousands of people came to greet him from the airport without TV's coverage. It's unusual for such a great event without TV's coverage in any country in the world. This is an example of how strictly the CPP have controlled the media network in the country.
Along with the media access, look at to the most important national institutions--military, police, court, and all levels of local administrations--are strictly controlled and used by the CPP as their political apparatuses to intimidate and to lure the people to vote for them. All these officials should be stayed neutral during election campaigns, instead they have used their power and positions in the government and national resources to help campaigning for the CPP. All these wily activities were well documented by the International Human Rights Watch. All these institutions are very independent from the political parties in the true democratic countries.
Furthermore, the National election Committee which has duty to organize and to guarantee fair election results, also has been controlled by the CPP. Actually, the main job of the NEC is to insure the continuous victory of the CPP regardless of what would go wrong. The NEC has not only created the good opportunity for the CPP to win but helped the CPP to cheat. At the same time, the NEC has tried to create obstacles and to prevent the opposition from winning the election. The followings are the tricks that the NEC has contributed for this election in order to help the CPP to win --creating ghost lists, double or triple name lists, allowing illegal Vietnamese to vote freely and the CPP's supporters to vote more than one place, using ink easy to erase so that voters can vote more than one time, making difficulty for registration and deleting voter's names suspected of the opposition supporters, and counting ballots and projecting the results without transparency.
In short, the election process has been totally flaw and corrupted from the beginning to the end, and must be seriously restructured in the future otherwise this election has just been used as a legal shield to cover up the CPP's dictatorial rule. The whole process of this election has been filled with the conventional fraud that means all aspects of this election process were marred by fraud rarely seen in any country in the world. The CPP have tried to cheat with all of their means and abilities whenever and wherever has been suitable for them in order to continue holding their power grip indefinitely. Should we allow this corrupted electoral system to be practised in the future again? If yes, we will repeat the post-election crisis as we are facing today. Or should we make a concrete reform before we participate?