Mon, January 24, 2022


EC defends Bt18 million political training course

The Election Commission (EC) Thursday defended its Bt18-million budget for an ongoing political training course that involved an overseas trip as reasonable and not extravagant.

The budget covered the whole course not just the overseas trip, the EC's acting secretary-general Jarungwit Phumma said.
The course was not designed to build particular contacts as representatives of every political party are invited, he said.
According to papers published in the EC’s website, the course’s attendees will also join an overseas trip from May 1 to May 15. About 100 trainees attended the course, which is paid for by the EC’s political party development fund and covers political and election development. The course runs from last December to this September.
The overseas trip would ran for 5 to 7 days, he said. 
“I don’t want public to see that this course is only for trainees to network,” he said. “The trainees are from various political parties. I believe that they would watch each other to make sure that neither comes here merely to build connections.”
The special training courses and oversea study tours organised by independent agencies have been in spotlight as some observers have questioned on their true benefits. 
The Constitution Drafting Commission is pondering on addressing prohibition against such the course in the new organic laws concerning independent agencies. 
It has already done so in the Election Commission draft bill, and is now considering whether to prohibit oversea study tours or not.

Published : March 09, 2017

By : Chanikarn Phumhiran  The Nation