The National Assembly’s (NA) Standing Committee is set to send the draft amendments to articles of the Constitution aiming to mandate single-citizenship for the nation’s top office holders to the expert committee for review.
King Norodom Sihamoni has already given his approval for the process to move forward after being briefed by the Constitutional Council of Cambodia (CCC) that the amendments did not contravene the principles of the constitutional monarchy and Cambodia’s status as a liberal multi-party democracy.
NA spokesman Leng Peng Long said on October 12 that on the day prior, the NA had received draft amendments to articles 19, 82, 106, 119 and 137 of the Constitution and articles 3 and 4 of the Additional Constitutional Law tending to ensure the smooth functioning of national institutions.
He said the NA will call a Standing Committee session on October 14 to send the drafts of the amended articles to the expert committee for review and they will report back on it before a plenary session with a vote is held.
“The expert committee will determine whether the proposed amendments contradict the Constitution or violate any national laws. The committee will then report back to the Standing Committee with their conclusions and then we will hold a plenary session of the NA and vote to dismiss or proceed,” Peng Long said.
The draft amendments to those articles would mandate single Cambodian citizenship for the prime minister and presidents of the NA, Senate and CCC.
On October 11, King Sihamoni sent a letter to Prime Minister Hun Sen stating that he was giving approval for the parliament to proceed with the legislative process required to amend these constitutional articles.
The King said he had received a letter from CCC president Im Chhun Lim on October 11 explaining the initiative to amend five articles of the Constitution and two articles of the Additional Constitutional Law, and which also informed him of the Council’s official determination that this would be legally permissible under the Constitution.
“I offer this letter of determination from the president of the Constitutional Council of Cambodia to Samdech Aka Moha Sena Padei Techo [Hun Sen] so that he may continue forward in accordance with our nation’s procedures,” the King wrote, using Hun Sen’s royal title.