Author’s Note: This is a photograph of a couple who were married during the Khmer Rouge’s short tenure of power (a ceremony Western ideologues claimed was outlawed in Kampuchea!), and it would seem that Democratic Kampuchea retained a ‘Constitutional Monarchy’ with King Sihanouk (and his family) being granted a State Pension… ACW (7.6.2019)
THE FIRST SESSION IN THE FIRST LEGISLATURE OF KAMPUCHEAN PEOPLE’S REPRESENTATIVE ASSEMBLY April 11-13, 1976
Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly’s
Plan on Decisions To Be Taken in its First Session, First Legislature
April 13, 1976
Respected and Beloved Kampuchean People’s Representatives!
From April 11 to April 13 1976, we have opened meeting both in forms of committee meeting and plenary meeting for discussion, review on all aspects and all qualifications of the agenda of Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly’s first session in the first legislature.
Having gone through debates for three consecutive days, the assembly’s floor is in unanimous agreement with the basic essence listed on the agenda towards a final decision.
Based on the unanimity provided by our session, the Chairmen of the meeting have prepared a draft of decision to be taken by the People’s Representative Assembly’s meeting in its first session, first legislature.
We, on behalf of the Chairmen, would like to read out the draft of decision to the floor for final approval and adoption.
Here we go.
After the successful election to choose the members of Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly on March 20, 1976, the Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly has conducted its first plenary meeting for the first period.
The first plenary meeting in the first period of People’s Representative Assembly was carried out for three days from the morning of April 11 until April 13, 1976 in the capital city of Phnom Penh in a great and warm solidarity atmosphere. The meeting focused on all important issues, which have been declared in the agendas. The issues are thoroughly discussed in accordance with Constitution of Democratic Kampuchea and with great spiritual responsibility for revolution, nation, workers, peasants, laborers, male and female youths, and cadres of Kampuchean Revolutionary Army.
After thorough and full examination of all issues, which are listed in the agendas, finally the assembly has formally adopted the followings:
- About the Evaluation of the Outcome of the General Election Held on March 20, 1976
The assembly’s unanimous adoption: The general election held on March 20, 1976 under careful supervision and monitoring of the election committee and committee of ministry of interior has been conducted meticulously according to the principles of the Constitution of Democratic Kampuchea. Workers, peasants, laborers, male and female youths, and cadres of Kampuchean Revolutionary Army have actively participated in the election in a super solidarity atmosphere and with strong belief in the Constitution of Democratic Kampuchea, in their relative-representatives, and in the anticipation of a brighter future of Democratic Kampuchea of their home country.
- About the Management of Work Procedures of Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly and the Organization of Standing Committee of the Assembly and Various Committees of the Assembly itself
Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly was founded by the fresh blood of laborers and peasants, which had been flowing like rivers in the struggle and in the fight thousand years ago.
All members of the Assembly are the flesh and blood of workers, peasants, laborers, and Kampuchean Revolutionary Army, who used to join in the revolutionary struggles, underwent hardship and misery together in the fight against imperialism, old and new types of colonialism and its lackeys, experienced happiness and despair together for years, and still, we can now live together in the class of laborers working in factories, railroads, harbors, rubber plantations, salt fields, dike systems in rice fields, and water channels in syndicates, in cooperatives, and in various departments of Kampuchean Revolutionary Army fighting relentlessly to build up our nation and to defense our country.
This is the true background of our representatives; there would be no qualification in term of representativeness and democratic nature better than the above-mentioned points. So far, until these days and from now on our Assembly shall maintain the nature as laborers, peasants, and our revolutionary army’s representatives into the future.
With this viewpoint, the Assembly has unanimously adopted the basic principle of work procedures as follows:
- Each member of Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly must continue to be representative for their previous local bases, sharing misery and happiness with people, trying to understand the feeling of the people, and make sure to be informed about people’s requests, especially staying closely with syndicates and factories, cooperatives, dike and irrigation systems, work sites, their own units, participate in building up and defense the country with workers and peasants people, laborers, male and female youths and cadres of Kampuchean Revolutionary Army in order to suit their ranks of real representatives of workers and peasants people, laborers, and Kampuchean Revolutionary Army.
- Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly shall conduct a plenary meeting once a year, in order to promote annually the political line inside and outside of the country and to observe the activities of the state presidium, government, and judicial committee. They shall also observe good and bad points and rectify annual work targets of the three state organs.
- During the period between each plenary meeting of Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly, there shall be a permanent organization of Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly which is responsible for practicing and observing the practice and decisions of the plenary meetings of the Assembly. This organization is called Standing Committee of Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly.
At the same time, the Assembly has also selected members of the Standing Committee of Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly and has also chosen members of other commissions of the Assembly.
The Standing Committee of Kampuchean People’s Representative Assembly is composed as follows:
- Comrade Nuon Chea, President
- Comrade Nguon Kang, First Vice-president
- Comrade Peou Sou, Second Vice-president
- Female Comrade Ruos Nim, Member
- Comrade Sar San, Member
- Comrade My Chham, Member
- Comrade Kheng Sokh, Member
- Comrade Matt Ly, Member
- Comrade Thang Sy, Member
- Comrade Ruos Preap, Member
- About the Examination, Judgement and Decision on the Request for Retirement by King Norodom Sihanouk by virtue of the his statement dated April 2, 1976 and the Government Statement dated April 4, 1976 on the Request for Retirement of the King dispatched to the assembly
Having thoroughly examined and discussed the two statements, the People’s Representative Assembly unanimously does hereby agree with the request for retirement of King Norodom Sihanouk.
By virtue of the great achievement of King Norodom Sihanouk, a patriotic monarch who has paid interest-bearing contribution to the nation and the people of Kampuchea for national liberation against heinous and barbarous aggressive war of American imperialism and its reactionary clique of traitors, including Lon Noll, Sirik Matak, Son Ngoc Thanh, Cheng Heng, In Tam, Long Boret, Sosten, the National Assembly does hereby agree with the government’s requests in the following:
- Entitle King Sihanouk “The Hero with the Highest Patriotism”.
- Build a memorial for inscribing his aforementioned achievement.
- Guarantee King Sihanouk’s and his family’s living standard as high as his honor and his status as Head of State and President of National Liberation Front of Kampuchea with a yearly pension amounted to US$8.000.
- About the Examination, Judgement and Decision on the Request for Retirement of the Former Government
The People’s Representative Assembly notes that the Government of Democratic Kampuchea, previously known as Royal Government of National Union of Cambodia [RGNUC] and established on May 5, 1970, has, in co-operation with the people of Kampuchea as a whole and the revolutionary army of Kampuchea, made great efforts to fulfill its task of waging People’s War for the liberation of nation and the people against American imperialism and its reactionary clique consisting of Lon Nol, Sirik Matak, Son Ngoc Thanh, Cheng Heng, In Tam, Long Boret, Sosten until the day of victory—April 17, 1975.
Given the whole country was liberated, and in accordance with the decision taken by the special national congress along with the decision made by the Third National Congress, the government jointly arranged for an establishment of the Constitution of Democratic Kampuchea, its promulgation and for the election of Representative Assembly of Kampuchea. The government, having accomplished major achievements, asks for resignation on April 6, 1976.
The People’s Representative Assembly unanimously agrees with the former government’s resignation.
- Election of the State Presidium of Democratic Kampuchea
Having painstakingly discussed the qualifications of all aspects, the People’s Representative Assembly elects and appoints the State Presidium of Democratic Kampuchea, which is composed of:
- Comrade Khieu Samphan, President
- Comrade Sao Phim, First Vice-president
- Comrade Ruos Nhim, Second Vice-president
- Election of the New Government of Democratic Kampuchea
Having painstakingly discussed the qualifications of all aspects, the People’s Representative Assembly chooses the new government of Democratic Kampuchea, which is composed of:
- Comrade Pol Pot, Prime Minister
- Comrade Ieng Sary, Deputy Prime Minister for Foreign Affairs
- Comrade Vorn Vet, Deputy Prime Minister for Economics
- Comrade Son Sen, Deputy Prime Minister for Defense
- Comrade Hou Nim, Minister of Propaganda and Information
- Comrade Chuon Choeun, Minister of Health
- Female Comrade Ieng Thirith, Minister of Social Affairs
- Comrade Tauch Toeun, Minister of Public Affairs
- Female Comrade Yon Yat, Minister of Culture and Education
The committees within the government framework and put in charge of economics are in the following:
- Committee of Agriculture
- Committee of Industry
- Committee of Commerce
- Committee of Communication
- Committee of Power
- Committee of Rubber Plantation
The Chief of each committee is equivalent in rank to Minister of the government of Democratic Kampuchea.
- Election of Judicial Committee
Having thoroughly discussed, the People’s Representative Assembly elects and appoints a judicial committee chaired by Kang Chap.
- People’s Representative Assembly’s Guidelines On Domestic and Foreign Policies of the State Presidium and the New Government of Democratic Kampuchea
The following are unanimously adopted domestic and foreign policies to be implemented by the new government of Democratic Kampuchea:
1)All articles and chapters of the constitution of the Democratic Kampuchea shall be correctly, completely, and cohesively implemented. The constitution of the Democratic Kampuchea is the soul of Democratic Kampuchea and the basis for domestic and foreign policies on various fields ranging from political economy, social affairs, culture, which stems from the fresh blood of millions of children of Kampuchea of several generations. Therefore, there shall be respect, observation and implementation at full strength.
2)Strengthen and extend the force of great national solidarity with higher revolutionary vigilance for defense of the country, territory, independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity within the existing boundaries and with high responsibility for the revolution, nation and our people of Kampuchea.
3)Strengthen and extend the force of great national solidarity for shock assaults in terms of production of all fields, especially agricultural field to the point that a maximum yield of rice shall be reached for upgrading the living standard of our people and building our country with the speed of great leap forwards.
4)Continue to implement political line of independence, peace, neutrality, and non-alignment of Democratic Kampuchea by virtue of article 21 of the constitution of Democratic Kampuchea.
There shall be strengthening and extension of the solidarity and fraternity with all revolutionary movements in various countries in the world, near and far, and with figures and youth in the five continents, who love peace and justice, including the ones in the United States of America, in order to struggle against imperialism, old and new colonies and reactionary forces for the sake of the revolution, independence, peace, democracy, fraternity and social development in the international arena.
The first session in the first legislature of the People’s Representative Assembly concluded on the evening of April 13, 1976 with great success, revolutionary optimism, and strong belief in a glorious future of the nation and people of Kampuchea.