Meechai rejects amending Political Party Act, Constitution in election lead-up
Constitution Drafting Commission (CDC) chairman Meechai Ruchupan on Thursday voiced opposition to a proposal to amend the Political Party Act to nullify party memberships for all existing parties in order to avoid disadvantaging new parties.
“It is not fair for political party members to have their membership status terminated,” he said, “although I admit that there is an advantage and disadvantage between the old and new parties,” said Meechai whose CDC drafted the law.
Early this week, Paiboon Nititawan, a former member of the now-defunct National Reform Council, proposed an amendment to the Act. He noted that the new act recognises the membership status of all who belong to existing political parties even if they have not paid their membership fees, while demanding members of new parties pay a fee that would then become the seed money for the registration process required under the new organic law.
Paiboon said the requirements reflect unfair treatment of all parties.
But Meechai said if the amendment affected or delayed the road map to the next election, the delay could not be blamed on the original charter writers.
The CDC chief also responded negatively to another proposal proposed by Somsak Thepsuthin, a veteran politician from Matchima Thippathai Party, to amend the 2017 Constitution to allow MP candidates to run as independents in the election rather than having to be attached to a political party.
“It is hard to amend the charter because it was passed in the referendum,” CDC chief Meechai.