Your Venerable Buddhist Monks,
Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,
Warm Welcome to International Delegations,
On behalf of presiding committee of the National Council of Solidarity Front for Development of Cambodia and myself, I would like to express my warmest welcome to all the participants of conference representing the society from all walks of life and different regions. I would like to welcome and profoundly thank distinguished national and international guests for taking their time to attend this conference and also for brining along friendship and solidarity to Cambodian people.
After busy work during this day, I am pleased to note the positive results accomplished by the 5th Conference of the Solidarity Front for Development of Cambodia. Indeed, the participation of representatives from various groups of society in the conference is warmly welcoming and bravely cheering the creation of the National Liberation Front on 2nd December and the great victorious day on 7th of January, including other major achievements that our people have accomplished since then. At the same time, it should be noted that the solidarity front conference is organized at the time when the whole nation is enjoying full peace, strong stability and have attained encouraging results in socio-economic development.
In this auspicious event, I would like to sincerely praise the efforts of the conference’s participants for unifying into the one front and gathering wisdoms and good experiences in order to benefit the solidarity front activities aiming to greatly contribute to the development of our homeland. Moreover, I would like also to extend my respect and gratitude to the front’s members as well as to all compatriots that have fulfilled their responsibilities as a good citizen and for their utmost efforts, in partnership with the government, relevant institutions and patriotic circle, in developing the country. In this sense, I hope that all members of the national council of the solidarity front in this fifth term will thrive to implement its tasks and responsibility effectively in meeting the targets and objectives set by the conference.
All these achievements, attained over the period of more than 27 years, has helped strengthen the foundation for national social development and provided valuable experiences for our future activities. In the past three decades, our nation has been unified in the name of Solidarity Front to Save the Nation, previously called Solidarity Front for Construction and Protection of Cambodia and now is the Solidarity Front for Development of Cambodia, and has become the mainstream in national development which would not be defied by any hostile force.
Based on its ample cause and historic achievements, the Solidarity Front to Save the Nation was recognized by people, in the history of Cambodia in late 1970s, as the only organization who led the struggle to liberate the country and people from the devastation of the genocidal regime and rehabilitate and develop the country. The front’s policies, including the ones on religion, intellectuals, Cambodian expatriates, and pardon policy for those misleading political choices, and other polices, have been widely disseminated and implemented achieved the most fruitful outcome which creates the favorable conditions for the Front to gather the people from all walk of lives to participate in the national development.
We ought to recall that after the victorious national liberation, the Front has closely cooperated with the authority to garner the great national solidarity force to fight against the return of the genocidal regime and to rehabilitate the socio-economic base as well as the living standard of the people that was heavily destroyed. Base on this great national solidarity force, we have successfully defended national rebirth and to bring the society out of the most difficult phase to reach the gradual progress.
Indeed, these victories enhances the progress in all national sector force and creates a favorable environment in speeding up of the socio-economic development as well as implementing the peace and national reconciliation until the creation of the Kingdom of Cambodia with multi-parties democratic system policy. Moreover, we should not forget about the end of many decades of civil war and the creation peace and national unity for the first time all over the country.
The success of peace and national reconciliation provides the greatest opportunity for Cambodians to realize their own potentials to successfully accomplish new stage of development and living standard and to remove the trace of suffering from the past. The achievement in socio-economic development and the poverty reduction in these latest years has strengthened confidence on the efforts aiming at reaching bright and stable future. Meanwhile, the progress in the process of creating the Khmer Rouge Tribunal under the laws of Kingdom of Cambodia to sentence the crimes committed in the Democratic Kampuchea is a positive step in search of justice for the Cambodian people and this process also responds to the position and the ideal of the Front.
With this great achievement, we still face many challenges on the development and poverty reduction path. At the same time, maintaining peace, stability, and national unification are still our main tasks that require us to further strengthen the great national solidarity.
The Front, which is a social organization with support from public at large, must maintain the patriotism culture and all achievements of the society as well as firmly holding its role in the recent development arena in order to fulfill its new tasks according to the changing environment of the nation.
In sum, going through a long road and real experiences shows that Solidarity Front for Development of Cambodia, which was created by the people resistance movement, always closely links with the people at any circumstances and fulfills its historical roles with high responsibilities and successes.
In the new context that is full of peace and pluralist democracy system, our Front still plays critical role in strengthening this system and to speed up national rehabilitation. Moreover, within this new context, the roles of the Front were transformed in responding to the new proposal and situation of the country. I would like the conference to adhere some important roles as follows:
First: the Front is a solidarity organization for the Cambodian people from all classes, milieus, beliefs, religion, that have emerged from the heart of individual or collective volunteer who have strong patriotic willingness, peace, democracy and freedom loving and voluntarily participate in the causes of building up and protecting the nation. In this regard, I would like to emphasize that our Front does not involve in politics which means that objective of the Front is not power, but it is a giant social organization that educates public on politics such as democracy, state of laws, human rights and citizenship. It aims at raising patriotic consciousness, democracy and culture of participation from people in building the nation.
Second: the Front pays attention in driving up public movement in all milieus to actively participate in implementing the national directions and policies in order to protect all achievements of the society, maintain peace, stability, unity and propel the development of the nation in all fields. In this sense, the Front does not make decision on national policy, but it contributes in form of opinion to make national policies and serves as a mechanism to mobilize individual or collective efforts for implementing national policies to be successful. At the same time, the Front will play a role in building connection between state and the people.
Third: the Front serves as an apparatus that actively participates in building up, strengthening and expanding a good relationship between Cambodian people and people of other countries, particularly with neighboring people, in order to tighten amity, solidarity of people in the sake of peace, cooperation and prosperity in the region as well as attracting for support the development in Cambodia.
In addition, base on principles of keeping its main roles and maintaining traditions and experiences of the Front, I would like to additionally point out some actual tasks that the Front’s organization in all levels and members should pay attention in implementing to turn the decision of today conference into actions:
1. Strictly upholding the 11 points in the report on activities outcome of the Front that is the principals for directing the Front in the new context and make wide public awareness in the society aiming at expanding mass people movement for national solidarity and development.
2. Educating the public of all milieus to clearly understand about all sectoral progress and encourage the movement to actively participate in implementing national policies and rules of law.
3. Educating people of all generations, especially youth to understand and always keep in their mind meaning of establishing the Front on 2nd December, victorious day of 7th January that are historic days and the second date of birth of Cambodian people while join together to maintain and expand all achievements of the society.
4. Constantly keeping in mind the crime of genocidal regime, paying attention to maintain stupas of skull of victims that were brutally killed during the period of 3 years 8 months and 20 days to be a worship place according to tradition and religious and to refresh memorials and gratitude to patriots who died for rebirth of the nation.
5. Closely cooperating with societal organizations to train in democracy and human rights, to build culture of peace and nonviolence, to enhance value of social morality and law, respects and to enrich the participation of people in the movement of local development as well as national movement for ensuring the sprout up of social consciousness, orders, dignity and harmony and the spirit of building up the country.
6. Reconstructing and Re-strengthening organizational structure of the Front of all level as stated in statute of the Front as well as paying attention in strengthening and expanding members of Front from all classes for example farmers, workers, employees, civil servants, armies, polices, monks, Buddhists, Muslims, Christians, other religious followers, women, youth, intellectuals, minorities, craftsmen, artists, authors, businessmen, producers, investors, organizations and associations.
7. Exerting efforts to enhance good relationship between the Front and public organizations, amity organizations of friend countries to augment solidarity of people.
I believe that membership of National Council of Solidarity Front for Development of Cambodia will exert efforts in implementing directions and decisions of the Fifth Conference of the Front successfully. I would like to wish all of you five gems of Buddhist blessing.