Poll: Thais want police reform sped up with Article 44

Breaking News July 16, 2017 16:16

By The Nation

More than half of Thais believe that Article 44 of the Interim Constitution should be invoked to facilitate police reform, according to a poll.

Conducted by the National Institute of Development Administration (NIDA), a recent survey revealed that 61.76 per cent of 1,250 respondents agreed with the invocation.

“These respondents believe the invocation will speed up the overhaul for better changes like greater flexibility and less corruption,” the survey found. 

Some 27.84 per cent of respondents disagreed with the use of Article 44 for police reform, citing that such a move could constitute too much interference and create a climate of semi-dictatorial pressure. 

Article 44 gives special powers to the chief of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), which staged the 2014 coup. This legal clause remains in effect even after the new constitution came into force earlier this year. 

Conducted between July 13 and 14, the survey on police reform found 30.32 per cent of people hoped the National Police Office would remain under the supervision of the prime minister following the reform.

Of those polled, 50.48 per cent believed police should retain investigation powers. But some 44.24 per cent others thought otherwise, explaining that police should have just the power to suppress crimes and make arrests, while other agencies should be in charge of investigations to provide a check-and-balance mechanism. 



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