Ms Chocaholic with lots of opinions and an attitude

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Thailand's Constitution Drafting Committee

For months I tried to refrain myself from making comments on the political situation in Thailand, but within these same few months, I have watched the military junta together with the body that they installed as government slowly but steadily foul up the democratic strength of Thailand!!!! So today I decided I can no longer sit quietly.

As you know the first thing the coup makers did after they took over powers was to throw out the 1997 Constitution (the one that is widely accepted as the People's it had the maximum people involvement). Anyhow over the months various contentious issues have been toyed with..including things such as an appointed Prime Minister! an appointed Senate body (upper house of parliament), or making Buddhism the religion of the country (dont know the technical term for it, but this will mean Thailand will no longer be a secular state if this were to happen. How do they see that will sit with other religious minoritites in the country...not to mention the very same Muslim population in South Thailand where the situation is already at boiling point?!?!0 anyhow today I will only talk about the below issue that got me really mad!!

The members of Consitutional drafting committee has proposed to dissolve the NHRC (National Human Rights Commission) or combine it with Ombudsman. Presently the Commission is an independent body that was established in line with the Paris Principles (internationally accepted guideline for establishing a truly INDEPENDENT human rights commission).

Thailand's NHRC is one amongst 4 that exist in ASEAN countries, and in the past Thailand together with the Philippines has been in the forefront to work on establishing an ASEAN Human Rights Mechanism. Other countries such an independent commission exist include: Thailand, Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia. Cambodia has recently agreed to establish its national commission, while also voicing support for the ASEAN wide body. True that in the political world such support will take years before it turns into substantive actions, but if the thailand body is to be dissolved, this would not be only a huge step back for thailand, but also for the entire region! The efforts has taken atleast 10 years of hard work before we reached this point.

without going into other contentious issues that this Constitution Drafting Committee are playing around with, the issue of the National Human Rights Commission in itself is already a huge blow and certainly a jump backward for thailand's democracy!!

I cant describe how mad this makes me!!!!!! angry.gif

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