Constitutional Court to begin reviewing changes made to draft

national September 07, 2016 01:00

By THE NATION

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THE CONSTITUTIONAL Court will today begin reviewing the revisions charter writers made to the draft charter in response to last month’s referendum.



The court’s secretary-general Pimol Thampitakpong said yesterday that the judges would kick off the task by first considering whether they should accept the Constitutional Drafting Commission (CDC)’s request to seek a judicial review. 
He said the tribunal would also debate on whether the CDC has supplied enough information for the review. If the information is found to be insufficient, then the court will ask for additional documents or testimony when necessary. 
“That will be clear at the judges’ meeting [today],” Pimol said, noting that the court needed to complete its review within 30 days as required by the post-coup interim charter. 
The court has been asked to rule on whether the changes made by the CDC to the original charter draft comply with the referendum result. In the plebiscite, voters accepted the option of allowing selected senators to help elected MPs choose a prime minister for a five-year term after the next Parliament convenes for the first time. 
Meanwhile, a group called the Network of Citizens Protecting the Country submitted a petition with the Ombudsman’s Office yesterday asking for an investigation into the legality of the draft charter. 
The petition said the draft had won support from some 17 million voters, which was only a third of the country’s 50 million eligible voters. Hence, it said, the draft had failed in the national vote as the interim constitution stated that at least half of the eligible voters would have to vote for the draft for it to be promulgated.
The group also asked the Ombudsman’s Office to have the Constitutional or Administrative Court interpret the relevant law. 

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