Public supports assembly ban

A majority of people are in favour of maintaining the regime’s ban on political activities to help foster peace, according to an opinion survey by Suan Dusit Rajabhat University.

The Suan Dusit Poll was taken from Aug 9-12 among 1,143 people nationwide to gauge their opinions on a Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon’s remark that the ban not be lifted anytime soon.

Critics took issue with this as the National Legislative Assembly (NLA) has already passed an organic law regulating political parties that appears to be at odds with the ban.

Gen Prawit, who is in charge of security affairs, said the situation in Thailand has not yet returned to normal and important political cases are still awaiting court rulings.

A majority of the respondents, or 61%, agreed with Gen Prawit on the ban while 39% disagreed. They were allowed to tick multiple answers.

Of those who agreed, 73.5% said they wanted to keep the ban to see the country at peace while 69.4% said they do not wish to see politicians quarreling.

Just under 68% said with the ban retained, the government can better control the political situation; 59% said the ban should continue until there a general election is held; and 47% said they want to see the government’s roadmap to the election completed.

Of those who wanted the ban lifted, 74.5% said it restricts parties’ activities; 64% said maintaining it could spur more conflict; 56.4% said the ban leaves little time for parties to prepare for elections; and 39% said it stops people keeping up with politicians’ activities.

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