Borwornsak defends draft charter as NRC begins debate

Borwornsak defends draft charter as NRC begins debate

Constitution Drafting Committee chairman Bowornsak Uwanno (standing) defends the draft charter at meeting of the National Reform Council on Monday. (Photo by Apichart Jinakul)
Constitution Drafting Committee chairman Bowornsak Uwanno (standing) defends the draft charter at meeting of the National Reform Council on Monday. (Photo by Apichart Jinakul)

The draft constitution is intended to give the people the supreme power, and to prevent a dictatorship of the majority in parliament, Constitution Drafting Committee chairman Borwornsak Uwanno said on Monday.

Mr Borwornsak was speaking in defence of the draft constitution at a meeting of the National Reform Council, which began deliberating it today. The debate will end on April 26.

He insisted the CDC, throughout the charter writing process, had never received instructions, guidelines or a blueprint of any kind, or concealed anything from the public.

The CDC had performed its task with four intentions -- to enable the people to reign supreme, to achieve clean and balanced politics, to promote a just society, and to lead the country to a peaceful existence.

Mr Borwornsak said the CDC, in drafting the constitution, had adhered to the principles of economic sufficiency and accountability. The new constitution had been designed to prevent a government from holding an absolute majority and to enable the people's sector to be in balance with the political sector.

He said the proposed mixed-member proportional representation and open list election system, following a German model, was intended to prevent the dictatorship of the majority and to protect the government from being easily brought down.

The new constitution placed emphasis on the people's sovereign power. It was designed to end social conflict through measures which are not limited to simply granting amnesty.

"Wrongdoers must be punished. But if they show remorse for what they have done, then they can be allowed to enter an amnesty process," Mr Bowornsak said.

Mr Bowornsak also touched on equality. He said that to achieve equality, economic disparities must be narrowed. This would lead to political and social equality, a democratic economy and reduction of the people's dependency on politicians.

He believed that throughout the seven days of debate the NRC would receive useful suggestions that could help make the new constitution a perfect one, commensurable with change and open to future amendments.

Alongkorn Ponlaboot, an NRC member and secretary of the NRC whip, said the proposed new charter was different from the old ones. It was the first charter to have a provision on reform and reconciliation, he said.

He, too, insisted that the NRC had not received instructions or directives from the government or the National Council for Peace and Order on the drafting of the new charter.

Mr Alongkorn said he wanted the CDC to give clear explanations to all questions which might be raised by the NRC members.

He was of the opinion the new charter should be put to a public referendum, to ensure it would be acceptable to all.

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