Proposal to directly elect Thai PM rejected

Updated: 2014-12-24 09:52


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BANGKOK - Thailand's Constitution Drafting Committee (CDC) on Tuesday shot down a proposal to directly elect the prime minister and cabinet members, citing the risk it might carry.

The CDC resolved to maintain the parliamentary system Thailand has been using, in which the prime minister is chosen by elected members of parliament (MPs), CDC Vice-Chairman Suchit Bunbongkarn was quoted by Bangkok Post as saying.

It is not yet necessary to shift to an unfamiliar system, as the long-established parliamentary system could still help solve election-related problems, Suchit said.

The proposal was earlier endorsed by the Political Reform Committee under the National Reform Council.

In a related development, Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam said Tuesday that Thailand would have a general election in February 2016 at the earliest.

But if a referendum is to be held on the new constitution, the election would likely be delayed to May 2016, Wissanu added.