Pheu Thai demands quick election

The Pheu Thai Party has demanded a general election early next year, revocation of "unconstitutional" orders of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) and freedom to express opinions about legislation.

The promulgation of the 2017 constitution last Thursday started a process to restore democracy and the government and the NCPO should hold the next general election as soon as possible, the country's biggest political party said in a statement on Monday.

Pheu Thai referred to the government's roadmap, which the party said had set the election early next year.

It also proposed the government and the NCPO refrain from exercising any special authority and revoke any NCPO orders that were unconstitutional.

It also demanded the government be open to opinions on bills and checks on the performances of the government sector.

According to the roadmap, after the new constitution was promulgated, drafting 10 organic laws takes up to 240 days, enacting them (60 days plus another 30 days to settle differences if other key bodies disagree with the changes), royal consideration (90 days) and preparing for the election (150 days).

Based on the timeline, the election will likely be held no later than November 2018.

The key factor is how soon constitution writers complete four election-related laws of all 40 organic laws since polls cannot be held without them. So far, they have completed two but the Constitution Drafting Committee's chairman had indicated they would likely take the full eight months because the process was complicated and involved several agencies, especially the Election Commission, of which composition has changed under the new charter.

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