Making Thailand safe from political parties

9 12 2014

The National Reform Council is a puppet “council,” set up by the military dictatorship and populated by military supporters. One of the chief supporters of the military junta, the coup and anti-democratic politics is former NIDA boss Sombat Thamrongthanyawong.

Sombat was one of the strategists for Suthep Thaugsuban’s anti-democratic street movement and, in that position, coordinated with the military. Suthep can’t leave the monkhood but Sombat keeps the anti-democratic flag flying amongst the puppets, where he is chair of a panel on “political reform.”

His panel surprised nobody by coming to a “consensus on the direct election of the prime minister and the cabinet, [the] election of MPs from large constituencies and election/selection of senators.”

While the proposal “includes the direct election of all 350 members of the lower house from multi-seat constituencies,” this reduces parliament by 150 members. Electing half of the Senate maintains the notion of half the senators being appointed by other members of the unelected swill while increasing the number of senators. This is aimed to reduce the legislative role of the lower house.

The panel also favored a directly elected premier and directly elected ministers. This is an “innovation,” removing the prime minister and cabinet from the politics of parliament and potentially breaking the link to political parties and executive.

Sombat’s reasoning on this seemed to be about opinion poll results. Of course, under the miltiary dictatorship, all political polls are more dubious than they usually are. But don’t let that hold back the anti-democrats.

Some of Sombat’s royalist buddies tried to play down the significance of these proposals. This included chief military constitution writer-for-hire Bowornsak Uwanno. They recognize that the discussion of such anti-democratic proposals may mean that there will actually be some debate.

Any proposal will eventually have to be approved by the military junta, and it is clear that it wants to wind back the significance of parliament, elected politicians and political parties.

In essence, the anti-democrats like Sombat are appealing to the generals and telling them how far they can go in diminishing democratic politics.


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3 03 2018
Supporting the junta’s political agenda | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] is nothing new to expect and the next election will not bring any change.” Sombat’s own role in creating this neanderthal political system is not […]

3 03 2018
Supporting the junta’s political agenda | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] is nothing new to expect and the next election will not bring any change.” Sombat’s own role in creating this neanderthal political system is not […]