Hun Sen rebrands with Facebook app

Phnom Penh (dpa) – Cambodia’s long-serving prime minister, Hun Sen, has launched a new Android app as he attempts to appeal to younger voters. 

Launched at the start of the year, the “Samdech Hun Sen” app can be downloaded on Google Play, providing users with English and Khmer information on the premier, as well as Cambodia’s economy and culture. It also has links to his Facebook page and live videos.

Government spokesman Phay Siphan told dpa on Wednesday that the app was launched so that the “public can access all information related to Hun Sen” and engage in two-way communication with the leader. 

Once known for hours-long speeches in rice fields and at graduations, the premier now regularly posts short live videos on Facebook.

Hun Sen has led Cambodia for most of the past 30 years – he was most recently elected prime minister in 1998 – but his grip on Cambodian politics has begun to slip as the country undergoes a demographic shift, with 63 per cent of the population under 30. The next elections are in 2018.

Google Play has only reported between 11 and 50 downloads of the Hun Sen app as of Wednesday morning, but it had nevertheless received a 4.9 out of 5 rating by 85 enthusiastic users. 

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