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Chat Pattana to nominate candidates for reform council

Party wants to offer suggestions, ideas to help pull the country out of crisis

The Chat Pattana Party will nominate candidates for the National Reform Council (NRC) selection process on Thursday, party spokesman Chalitrat Chandrubeksa said yesterday.

The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) has called on various sectors to nominate candidates for the chance to be named on the 250-person council and help drive the reform mission. Each body can nominate only two candidates.

Chalitrat said his party was ready to offer opinions and suggestions to reform Thailand because it realised the significance of reform after the country witnessed political deadlock and a prolonged crisis after the disputed election in February.

"We would like to help brainstorm for solutions to solve problems in a sustainable way and move the country forward and to ensure the country will not go back to square one,'' he said.

He suggested that major sectors of society should help reflect on the root causes of problems that Thailand faces so all problems can be tackled directly.

Office of the Ombudsman secretary-general Chalermsak Chantaratim said the office had met and decided to field candidates because it was a legal entity that played a role in reforming laws and was responsible in checking the ethics of state officials and political office-holders.

He mentioned ex-ombudsmen Pichet Soontornpipit, Poonsup Piya-Anant and Pramote Chotimongkol as possible candidates due to their knowledge and experience, which could reflect problems faced by Thais.

The office will meet tomorrow to select the candidates.

Professor Dr Amara Pongsapich, chairwoman of the National Human Rights Commission, said the commission had scheduled a meeting to discuss whether to field candidates.

Amara said she felt it was not necessary to nominate anyone because she had been told the NRC wanted to reform independent agencies but the decision rested with the commission.

National Legislative Assembly chairman Pornpetch Wichitcholchai yesterday downplayed a remark by his deputy Surachai Liengboonlertchai that the NLA would call a vote on the next PM next Wednesday or Thursday. Pornpetch said there was no specific timeframe yet to vote on the PM as the assembly was still awaiting royal endorsement for the NLA chairman and deputies.

He said once the NLA chairman and deputies had royal endorsement, the NLA's first priority was to deliberate the 2015 budget bill.

The assembly also has to appoint members of a committee on NLA affairs or whips to prioritise laws that need to be considered. As the whips have not been appointed, he would consider priorities for the assembly.

Meanwhile, NLA second deputy chairman Peerasak Porchit said he would meet Pornpetch and Surachai tomorrow to discuss meeting regulations and the timeframe for considering the budget bill, plus when to call a vote on the next PM.

Peerasak said the vote should be called soon so that the country can move forward. He believed NCPO chief General Prayuth Chan-ocha would be nominated solely without other candidates to challenge Prayuth.


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