Charter drafters off to Germany

Charter drafters off to Germany

The Constitution Drafting Committee (CDC) will see first-hand how the German electoral system it favours for the new charter works, after Germany invited it on a tour to look at the details.

The CDC accepted the German government's invitation and has scheduled the trip for March 15-20 to Berlin.

Members will meet election specialists for briefings on how to incorporate changes into the Thai system.

The German government extended the invitation after hearing the CDC backs a German-style MMP system as part of its charter reform proposals.

Under the MMP system, there is no minimum-vote ceiling required for each party to gain a constituency MP, which allows small parties the chance to gain parliamentary representation, one of the hallmarks of MMP.

If a small party receives between 60,000 and 70,000 votes, it can then have one or two representatives in parliament.

The 200 senators in parliament will be elected indirectly to ensure they represent various occupational groups.

A team of nine representatives from the CDC, Election Commission (EC) and National Reform Council (NRC) will join the trip, including CDC president Bowornsak Uwano, secretary-general Karanjanarat Leewiroj and spokesman Gen Lerdrat Rattanavanit (who also serves as adviser to the CDC).

EC members Suphachai Somcharoen, Boonsong Noisophon and Prawit Rattanapean, and NRC vice-president Tassana Boonthong and Sombat Thamrongthanyawong, who chairs the NRC's political reform committee, will also take part.

Thammasat University's deputy director Parinya Thewanarumitkul, who is also a law lecturer with expertise in the German election system, has also agreed to accept the invitation to visit Germany.

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