A total of 27 political parties, none of whom won a seat in the July 23 national election, have requested that they be allowed to join the Supreme Council for Consultation and Recommendations, a body formed following the 2018 general election to provide input to the government. Each of them is among the more than 40 parties registered with the Ministry of Interior.

Chhim Phal Vorun, head of the council secretariat, said it had received a total of 27 applications as of September 1, but no final decisions had yet been made.

“We have not yet reviewed the applications or sent them to Prime Minister Hun Manet – we will do so when the 14 day application window closes,” he explained.

He said the 14 day window began on August 26, when a royal decree on the matter was issued.

The prime minister recently announced that all political parties who were registered with the interior ministry were welcome to apply to the council, even if they had failed to register for the recent election.

Pich Sros, president of the Cambodian Youth Party (CYP), said on September 3 that his party had already submitted its application.

He said the CYP, which joined the council when it was formed by former Prime Minister Hun Sen following the 2018 election, is committed to adhering to the content of the royal decree.

“So far, we have not determined what issues we would like to raise with the government; we will remain flexible, so we can respond to the realities of the Kingdom’s situation,” he explained.

Kimsour Phirith, spokesman for the Candlelight Party (CP), which was disqualified from the 2023 election, said his party will not join the council because it had been unable to register for the polls.