Cambodia’s Premier Hun Sen Steps Down, Son To Assume Leadership

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This combination photo shows Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen and his son Hun Manet during election campaign rallies in Phnom Penh, Cambodia [File: Cindy Liu/Reuters]
This combination photo shows Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen and his son Hun Manet during election campaign rallies in Phnom Penh, Cambodia [File: Cindy Liu/Reuters]

PHNOM PENH – In a significant announcement yesterday, Prime Minister Hun Sen of Cambodia officially revealed his decision to step down from his position. The leadership baton will be passed on to his eldest son, General Hun Manet, who is slated to assume the role of the country’s new leader from 22 August. This momentous event has sparked a wide array of reactions from the citizens of Cambodia, who have been interviewed to gauge their thoughts and sentiments on this historic leadership transition.

Khmer Times reporter Tith Kongnov and photographer Pann Rachana ventured out to the streets to capture the public’s opinion about this momentous development. One of the vendors, Sor Sreyneth, expressed hope that the new government under Hun Manet would continue the development initiatives set forth by his father and work towards enhancing the living standards of the people.

Sor Sreyneth, 34, vendor

Sor Sreyneth - Hope the new premier will learn from Hun Sen on developing the country
Sor Sreyneth – Hope the new premier will learn from Hun Sen on developing the country

I hope that the new government under Hun Manet will learn from his father in developing the country to improve the living standards of the people.


Chak Kan Sreylin, 20, student

Chak Kan Sreylin - A Samdech Techo Hun Sen scholarship student
Chak Kan Sreylin – A Samdech Techo Hun Sen scholarship student

I am a Samdech Techo Hun Sen scholarship student so I think he has always developed all sectors of the country, especially education. He has given a chance for students from poor families to continue their studies.


Kong Leang, 44, tuk tuk driver

Kong Leang - A tuk tuk driver and supports Hun Sen's choice
Kong Leang – A tuk tuk driver and supports Hun Sen’s choice

I support 100% that Mr Hun Sen chose Hun Manet to be Prime Minister as he has the ability to lead and he always goes to the provinces to provide free healthcare for patients and helps people when they are facing difficulties.


Dy Cheng, 19, university student

Dy Cheng - Says thanks to Hun Sen for the country's growth in all sectors
Dy Cheng – Says thanks to Hun Sen for the country’s growth in all sectors

I want to say thanks to Mr Hun Sen who has led the country to grow in all sectors. He has always helped people when they needed it such as during flash floods and other natural disasters.


Korn Lay, 29, garment factory worker

Korn Lay - During the Covid-19 pandemic, the workers were taken care of
Korn Lay – During the Covid-19 pandemic, the workers were taken care of

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Samdech Techo Young Volunteer Doctors Association (TYDA) treated garment factory workers and took care of us, so I really support Hun Manet to be Prime Minister of Cambodia.


Rong Saroeum, 70, pensioner

Rong Saroeum - sad to see that Hun Sen will no longer be PM
Rong Saroeum – sad to see that Hun Sen will no longer be PM

I am very sad that Mr Hun Sen will be not Prime Minister of Cambodia because for over 30 years he has protected the security and peace of the Kingdom and provided the ID poor Card, National Social Security Fund and other benefits to poor families.


Heng Vannara, 53, school principal

Heng Vannara - Support PM Hun Sen's decision
Heng Vannara – Support PM Hun Sen’s decision

I support Prime Minister Hun Sen’s decision because he now thinks that he is old and he wants the younger generation to be ministers.


Chea Sopheap, 47, motor trailer driver

Chea Sopheap - Good news about the transfer of power so younger leaders have a chance to lead the country
Chea Sopheap – Good news about the transfer of power so younger leaders have a chance to lead the country

It is good news that Mr Hun Sen has transferred his power to his son Hun Manet. I want to see a young leader lead this country and more development across all sectors.

Spectrum Of Emotions

As the news of Prime Minister Hun Sen’s decision to step down and pass the mantle to his son reverberates across Cambodia, the citizens have showcased a spectrum of emotions. While some cherish the legacy of Hun Sen and hope for continuity under his successor’s leadership, others look forward to new possibilities and progress with a young leader at the helm.

The date of 22 August is poised to mark the beginning of a new era in Cambodia’s political landscape, and the global audience eagerly awaits the unfolding of this historic transition. – Khmer Times

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