Questioning elections and the corrupted charter

4 03 2018

In an important modulation of tune, some in the media are beginning to question what the call for a junta “election” means.

Prachatai has an editorial – not common for them – which reminds readers of the twin calls made by the activists calling themselves the Democracy Restoration Group:

… The DRG has proposed two main ideas — firstly, the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) must hold an election in 2018, and, secondly, it must cease its efforts to hang on to power after the election.

“When we have elections, when we have an [elected] cabinet, the NCPO has to step down by default; this is the first step of building our democracy,” DRG leader Anon Nampa said during a speech at the protest on 24 February at Thammasat University. “Second step, … all NCPO orders and announcements that limit our rights must be amended by a parliament that we elect. This is the importance of elections.”

It says the second step is being largely ignored in the media and by the broader public and advises: “Pro-democracy activists should remind the public more that the election will not lead the country to a brighter future if the military still retains power in Thai politics.”

In the Bangkok Post, Alan Dawson writes of advance election rigging, using all the state’s means and resources and a dirty tricks campaign. All designed to keep The Dictator and his junta mates in power after the junta’s “election.”

These warnings need to be taken seriously. But more attention should also be given to the 2017 constitution and its long-term rigging of the political system for the benefit of the ruling classes and their cronies. It should not be forgotten that the “referendum” for the junta’s constitution was neither free nor fair and that the constitution results from a series of mutinous and illegal actions by the military dictatorship.

Part of the “fix” that the constitution puts in place is the near impossibility for any elected government to alter the junta’s basic law. Yet any “elected” government that is not the devil spawn of the junta must do away with this corrupted charter.


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27 06 2018
Illusions of progress towards Thai democracy | East Asia Forum

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