EC ready for election of MPs, selection of senators

  • Photo : Supachai Somcharoen, The Election Commission chairman
    Supachai Somcharoen, The Election Commission chairman

The Election Commission is ready for the selection of senators and election of MPs as all regulations concerned have been drafted, EC chairman Supachai Somcharoen said at a function to mark EC’s 20th founding anniversary this morning.

Allaying fears that under the current political circumstances EC could not be impartial, Mr Somchai said it is duty-bound to strictly follow all laws and regulations concerned. According to the constitution, EC members must be honest and politically neutral.

The EC chairman said it is beyond his ability to foresee if any untoward incidents would occur before or during the election of MPs as happened in the past. He called for the people to cooperate with the EC in combating election fraud.

On a suggestion that with the number of constituencies reduced from 375 to 350 some political parties would see their support base affected, Mr Somchai said everthing is based on the new constitution.

Mr Somchai affirmed that the EC is ready for the forthcoming selection of senators and election of MPs as the drafts of related regulations are now ready. Once the organic laws on the acquisition of senators and the election of MPs are put in force, the the draft regulations can soon be enforced although some amendments may be required in line with the main laws.

As for the local elections, Mr. Somchai said he expected the amendments of the laws on the elections of local council members and administrators to be finished by the end of June.

He said the EC has estimated that the forthcoming election of MPs would cost about 5,800 million baht as there would be more expenses for EC inspectors to conduct intelligence work and investigations of suspected election fraud to ensure a free and clean election.

As for the selection of senators, the EC expects to spend about 1,200 million baht, about 800 million baht down from the previous amount of 2,000 million baht because of the change in the selection method.