Election crisis and the EC on holidays

15 04 2019

There’s plenty of wheeling and dealing going on behind the scenes as senators are selected – some big people are sticking their bib into this one – and even calls for a “national government,” perhaps ditching Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha as premier.

The Bangkok Post noted how this idea regularly comes up in times of crisis. We guess this means Thailand is now officially in crisis, again. That puts the last nail in the junta’s coffin. Think about it. They seized power via coup and ruled unimpeded for 5 years with the express aim of getting over political crisis. They failed. Indeed, as the Post says:

While the possibility of forming a national government these days cannot entirely be ruled out, conflicts would likely be even more prominent as parties with different ideologies compete to gain more power within the coalition.

The only reason for such a national government to come into existence is to amend the 2017 constitution which is the major cause of several serious political problems as well as the current deadlock.

That’s all the junta’s work and they succeeded in creating an unworkable electoral and political system. Maybe that’s what these thugs wanted.

Meanwhile, the Bangkok Post reports, that the Election Commission is on holiday for new year. With an election result missing and the whole EC facing its own crisis of legitimacy, they have all gone on holidays. Boss Ittiporn Boonpracong said: “The EC will be back to work on April 17 after Songkran.”

Just what The Dictator ordered? But four days off while the agency “will have only four days before poll re-runs are held on April 21.” But, then, re-runs might just be held a week after that. Who knows? Not the EC.

Then there are the 326 complaints “in connection with prospective winners in 66 constituencies.” And there might be additional complaints over the next 9 days. The EC needs to decide on these complaints to see if more re-runs are needed. Then, “all poll re-runs must be held before the EC endorses at least 95% of official poll results by May 9.” To do any kind of professional job – not that the EC has so far – investigation and poll re-runs on that schedule is impossible. Blame the junta, it set the rules.

Yet one piece of news also suggests that some “investigating” has taken place: “17 complaints have already been dismissed due to the lack of evidence and witnesses.” Who knows if that is true.

All of this also requires tiptoeing around the coronation. We continue to be amazed at how much trouble the king has caused by his choice of days for this aggrandizing show.

The holidays and the coronation seem to be far more significant than the first completed national election since 2011 (even a rigged one).

The EC has already ordered election re-runs at six polling stations in five provinces including Bangkok, and the recounting of votes at two stations in Khon Kaen province.

How far behind is the EC? It seems that the recounts haven’t yet been conducted in two polling booths in the northeast. Even critics find this hard to believe.

In all of this, the EC faces complaints too.

Ittiporn reckons the EC is “ready to defend itself against multiple legal challenges over its performance in the recent poll, as well as face an impeachment process…”. He said: “I insist that we have performed our duties with honesty…”. Good luck with that Mr Ittiporn.


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17 04 2019
Election crisis | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] recently posted on the resurrection of the notion of a “national government.” The interesting thing […]

17 04 2019
Election crisis | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] recently posted on the resurrection of the notion of a “national government.” The interesting thing […]