NCPO: Reform ideas crystallised

The junta's working group on national reform has synthesised 1,000 ideas from various groups into 11 areas to be reformed.

Gen  Surasak Kanchanarat, the new defence permanent secretary, said today the work had been 70% complete since the panel was formed on June 4.

It collected 230 pieces of research, academic works and proposals of political groups and all movements.

It also accumulated data from websites and telephone calls and grouped them into 1,000 ideas.

These ideas were summarised into 11 areas to be reformed such as politics, corruption, public sector, energy and education.

In-depth interviews were also held with leaders of all parties, all of whom came in person, as well as those of political movements.

For instance, the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship or the red shirts was represented by Tida Tawornseth, Weng Tojirakarn, Jatuporn Prompan, Nattawut Saikuar and Veerakarn Musikhapong.

The People's Democratic Reform Committee was represented by Suthep Thaugsuban, Issara Somchai, Sathit Wongnongtoey and Akanat Promphan.

The Pheu Thai party was represented by Pol Lt Col Virote Pao-in and Phumtham Vechayachai.

Sub-group meetings have been organised of 40-50 persons each for further discussions while seminars were also held at King Prajadhipok's Institute and the National Defence College.

These ideas will eventually be submitted to the National Reform Council at the end of July so it can start work immediately.

Gen Surasak said the ideas to be submitted to the the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) would not be judged; they were just the thoughts that Thais have in common. For its part, the NCPO will serve as a facilitator for the exchange.

Among the ideas gathered are the sources of MPs, senators and the government — whether they should be elected, appointed or a mix of both.

Other ideas are accountability, check and balance mechanisms and punishments.

Political party reform and decentralisation were the areas that attracted diverse ideas, he noted, adding the party leaders generally shared common thoughts.

The good news is that all share the same goals. Everybody wants moral, ethical politicians and efficient government who cares about the well-being of people, Gen Surasak said.

All also want justice with no double standards, in line with an NCPO guideline, he said. 

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