Thais want junta to stay in power, says Thai junta survey

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has come under criticism by politicians after he raised four questions during his weekly television programme on Friday. (Bangkok Post file photo)

The public wants Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha to remain in power until reforms are implemented, according to initial public feedback on Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha’s four questions.

The findings, claimed yesterday by Sompas Nilapund, deputy permanent-secretary to the Office of the Prime Minister, have drawn flak from critics who see the premier’s questions as an attempt to test the water for another delay in the election roadmap.

Pheu Thai Party politician Anusorn Iamsa-ard lashed out at Mr Sompas for sharing the findings with the public, saying it represented the opinions of a handful of people compared with millions who have yet to have a say.

Mr Anusorn said the best way to know the public answers is to let them to go to the polls.

“They will give you the answers on that day … who they want to run the country. Just one single question,” he said.

According to Mr Sompas, a total of 280 people offered their opinions through Hotline 1111 and 47 people gave their answers at government’s public complaints centre opposite Government House from June 12-14.

According to Mr Sompas, the majority of the 47 respondents believe the next elected government is unlikely to offer good governance and suggest that Gen Prayut and the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) should stay and complete the mission.

The participants also agreed that politicians with unethical principles should not be allowed to contest the polls and they should be stripped of their rights to participate in elections.

Most of them propose that elections should not take place until reforms are implemented.

According to the Interior Ministry, almost 90,000 people this week answered the prime minister’s questions about politics and the future of Thailand.

The Damrongtham Centre, which runs the complaint centres in all provinces, where people are allowed to submit their answers to the questions, reported 88,390 people gave responses to the prime minister’s questions from Monday to Friday.

Khon Kaen led with 9,582 over the past five days, followed by Sakhon Nakhon (5,676) and Ubon Ratchathani (3,213). Samut Sakhon saw the fewest respondents (43), followed by Nakhon Nayok (107) and Ang Thong (119). In Bangkok, 3,503 people shared their views this week.

Gen Prayut raised the four questions in his weekly address on May 26.

The first question asked whether people think the next elected government will ensure good governance. The second question asked what should be done if there is no such government after the next election.

In the third question, while admitting that elections are an important part of democracy, he asked whether elections that fail to take into account matters relating to the country’s future, reforms and national strategy are the right thing.

His fourth question asked if politicians who behave improperly should get a chance to run in elections again. He asked who will deal with them and how, if problems should occur again.

Commenting on the feedback about good governance of the new elected government, Democrat deputy leader Nipit Intarasomabt said the prime minister owes the public an answer.

He said the military government has been in power for three years with a mission to implement reforms. With the new constitution in place, the government must answer why the people think good governance could not be ensured.

Meanwhile, the Suan Dusit Poll found most respondents do not believe the next elected government can offer good governance and politicians with tainted records should not be allowed to contest the polls.

The survey was conducted from June 12-16 with 1,206 people across the country taking part.

Of total respondents, 54.73% said they did not think the next elected government can offer good governance compared with 45.27% who said it would.

On the prime minister’s fourth question, 74.1% of the respondents said the politicians should not be allowed to re-enter politics against 27.3% who believed they should be given a second chance.

The poll also showed 84% of respondents said they would not bother to go to government offices to provide the feedback on the prime minister’s questions. – Bangkok Post

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