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Election expected in Octobre 2015

ELECTIONS FOR parliamentarians are expected to be held in October 2015 and a democratically elected government in place late next year, the junta leader said Friday night.

General Prayuth Chan-ocha, chief of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), said a provisional charter would be promulgated next month and a new constitution could be announced by August next year.

When the new constitution is in place, the NCPO's interim government will spend about three months preparing for the election of new parliamentarians, according to Prayuth, who is also Army commander-in-chief.

"The elections to be held under the new constitution will be fair and just in order to bring about a constructive and complete democracy," he said during his weekly TV address.

"You will get a democratically elected government by 2015. Please take it easy. We need some time for reforms. Things should be done by next year."

He said a national legislative assembly would be set up about a month after the interim charter is in place and a new interim government could start functioning in September.

Prayuth said Friday night the interim charter would require reforms in all areas, such as politics, the economy, society, the environment, energy and the justice system.

He said a national reform council set up via the interim charter would implement reforms in all areas and suggest to a constitution drafting committee how the new constitution should be written to achieve reform.

It was reported earlier that the NCPO's power would remain the same even after an interim government is installed. The interim charter will include Article 17, which will give the NCPO greater powers than the government, the Isra News Agency reported.

Once the interim government is set up, the NCPO will still have the power to issue orders, make public announcements and carry out any other activities it deems necessary to maintain national security.

High-ranking military officials will make up half of the 200-member National Legislative Assembly, which will be wholly appointed by the NCPO.

So far, four legal specialists have turned down an invitation from the NCPO to lead the charter-writing panel. They are Council of State chief Meechai Ruchuphan, NCPO adviser Wissanu Krea-Ngam, King Prajadhi-pok's Institute secretary-general Dr Borwornsak Uwanno and Thammasat University rector Somkid Lertpaitoon.


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