Former military commander Nhek Bun Chhay yesterday released a photo of himself at his home in Phnom Penh following days of speculation about his whereabouts since he was fired on June 5 as a government adviser with the rank of deputy prime minister and forced to surrender arms.
Bun Chhay, who now leads the Khmer National United Party, the only party besides the two major parties to win a commune at the June 4 vote, posted an apparently new photograph to his Facebook page showing himself being presented with a fruit basket by former Funcinpec party official Prak Chantha.
Speaking by phone, Chantha said that she had met with the KNUP leader, who Defence Minister Tea Banh said on Sunday stripped of his role because he was no longer “loyal” to the government. “He’s in Phnom Penh. I visited him,” Chantha said, declining to comment further and hanging up.
Bun Chhay commanded the military for the royalist Funcinpec in the 1990s coalition government, and had been unreachable since news broke that he was fired on the request of Prime Minister Hun Sen.