In the fallout from the dumping of the draft charter, one of the telling responses has come from the royalist Democrat Party and its tainted leader Abhisit Vejjajiva.
At The Nation it is reported that the “inclusion of the National Strategic Reform and Reconciliation Committee … in the draft charter was the main reason the Democrat Party rejected the draft…”. We are told that this is due to a fear that “it would stir conflict in society…”. Abhisit had made this point earlier.
Soracha Weerachartwattana, a former Democrat MP for Samut Prakan province, “added that another reason for the party having rejected the draft was that the current interim charter did not allow for any amendment to the draft. This could have caused more problems in the future…”.
At the same time, Abhisit “had clearly said most of the content of the constitution was acceptable. He fully supported the provisions on anti-corruption measures, the creation of an anti-corruption mechanism and the legal punishment related to the issue.”
In other words, Abhisit supported anti-democratic provisions such as unelected senators, ridiculously complicated voting systems, the empowering of unelected officials and more.
This approach is not that distinct from The Dictator’s views. General Prayuth Chan-ocha declared “that content of the draft constitution voted down by the National Reform Council would help guide the new round of charter drafting.” While Prayuth says that “some NRC members thought it was not democratic,” we have doubts because these “democrats” all seem to have military uniforms.
Prayuth then sounded Abhisit-like, or vice-versa, stating:
People believe that the country faces a major threat and this needs to be handled, so those concerned must find ways to tackle it….
At first, I also thought that it would certainly pass the NRC vote….
For me, I never said anything to the media as I would accept any result, but if it really passed with a new conflict arising, whether or not it was worth reconsidering. There was nothing about my staying in power as people have allowed me to stay because they have confidence in me.
Neither The Dictator nor the Democrat Party make democratic sense.
Also at The Nation, iLaw, a rights group advocating legal reform, declared the whole draft “vague and downright impractical…” and declared the NRC a failure. It claims the NRC “proposed the creation of 100 new government agencies, provided 505 vague legislative proposals and presented a reform timeframe that extends until 2032.”