11 July 2024

Both the Democrat and Pheu Thai parties have come out to slam the National Council for Peace and Order for what they see as its interference in the work of the Election Commission.

They claim that the executive order issued by Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha over the weekend in his capacity as the junta leader to extend the deadline for the Election Commission to redraw the election constituencies was designed to favour certain political parties and a pretext to delay the election.

Pheu Thai Party’s legal advisory chairman Chusak Sirinil said the NCPO’s action amounts to an interference with the election because demarcating the boundaries of poll constituencies is not the job of the junta.

He questioned whether the junta’s action was intended to favour certain political parties and to find a pretext to delay the election tentatively scheduled for February 24.

Democrat party deputy leader Sathit Pitudecha said giving additional time for the EC to do its job in demarcating election boundaries would benefit the pro-government Palang Pracharat party which was reported to be facing problems of duplicating of candidacy in some constituencies between the party and its key ally, the Sam Mitr group.

He said the EC would be meaningless if it bends with the NCPO in using more time in the mapping of the boundaries of constituencies.

The EC was originally scheduled to submit constituencies map for publication in the Royal Gazette on November 16, but it decided to withhold the map submission after the NCPO issued the controversial order.