A Tall Order: Free and Fair Elections

A Tall Order: Free and Fair Elections

A Tall Order: Free and Fair Elections Activism, Blog, Southeast Asia, Thailand
August 2, 2018

While people talk about political parties and the usual predictions of who will be the prime minister, there’s very little open debate about the role and responsibilities of the Election Commission of Thailand.

It’s like this – the commission is empowered by the junta. Nothing about the commission is connected to a democratically-elected civilian government.

Just in case you need reminding, Thailand is still under the heel of the junta – thanks to a coup d’état in 2014.

Anyway, I think community and political leaders should continue questioning and advocating to the junta about a not-so-strange concept of a free and fair election. A tall order, I’m sure. But there are other things we could consider, and discuss within civil society.


For example, is there anyway to enable a transparent and accountable election commission? What are the plans of action preventing mismanagement of voter registration and records? And what about societal concerns related to infringements on freedom of assembly and association? Is the commission, with the help of other authorities, prepared to solve and stop corruption and intimidation that would prevent citizens from exercising their rights?

A Reality?

On the other side, a confusing reality as we know it.

In the absence of democracy to spearhead the upcoming election, it will be impossible for the military rulers to convince the masses that the upcoming election will be free and fair.

Then again, maybe they, this regime, their grand political ambitions and supported by devoted political cronies, simply don’t care about the people and their aspirations for democracy.



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