Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha as Head of the National Council for Peace and Order invoked Section 44 of the 2014 Interim Constitution to issue five orders in the past two weeks

Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha as Head of the National Council for Peace and Order invoked Section 44 of the 2014 Interim Constitution to issue five orders in the past two weeks

From 16-29 April 2015, the Head of the National Council for Peace and Order, Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha, invoked Section 44 of the 2014 Interim Constitution to issue five orders as follows;

  1. The Order of the Head of the National Council for Peace and Order no. 6/2558 regarding the creation of more position and the appointment of government officials It has basically led to the reshuffling of the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Education, Secretary General of the Office of the Education Council, Secretary General of the Office of Higher Education Commission, Secretary General of the Office of the Private Education Commission, Inspector General of the Ministry of Education, Deputy Secretary General of the Office of the Basic Education Commission, Secretary General of the Office of the Teacher Civil Service and Educational Personnel Commission (OTEPC)

For more detail: http://www.ratchakitcha.soc.go.th/DATA/PDF/2558/E/087/1.PDF

  1. The Order of the Head of the National Council for Peace and Order no. 7/2558 regarding the performance of duties of the Teachers Council of Thailand, the Office of the Welfare Promotion Commission for Teachers and Educational Personnel and the Trade Affairs Committee under the Office of the Welfare Promotion Commission for Teachers and Educational Personnel It has basically led to the termination of office of members of the Teachers Council of Thailand by virtue of the Act on Teachers Council and Educational Personnel B.E. 2546, members of the Welfare Promotion Commission for Teachers and Educational Personnel by virtue of the Act on Teachers Council and Educational Personnel B.E. 2546 and members of the Trade Affairs Committee under the Office of the Welfare Promotion Commission for Teachers and Educational Personnel and new committee members have been appointed and will continue to remain in office until the termination of the National Council for Peace and Order.

In addition, the Committee to Monitor and Review the Expending of Government Budget is established by the NCPO Order no. 45/2557 dated 3 June 2014 and its amendment and will be tasked to review and ensure transparency of the expending of government budget, financial management, the management of assets and other interests of the Teachers Council of Thailand, the Office of the Welfare Promotion Commission for Teachers and Educational Personnel and the Trade Affairs Committee under the Office of the Welfare Promotion Commission for Teachers and Educational Personnel.

For more detail: http://www.ratchakitcha.soc.go.th/DATA/PDF/2558/E/087/2.PDF

  1. The Order of the Head of the National Council for Peace and Order no. 8/2558 regarding the appointment of new members to replace the vacant seats in the National Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) It has basically forbid the selection and appointment of new members to replace the vacant seats in the NBTC as per Article 17 of the Act on the Organization to Assign Radio Frequency Spectrum and Regulate the Sound Broadcasting, Television Broadcasting and Telecom Services. BE.2553 and to order the NBTC to continue operating with the remaining commissioners. And if it is necessary for a new commissioner to be selected to replace a vacant seat, concerned parties should proceed so using the existing law mutatis mutandis.

For more detail: http://www.ratchakitcha.soc.go.th/DATA/PDF/2558/E/094/1.PDF

  1. The Order of the Head of the National Council for Peace and Order no. 9/2558 for the termination of office of a government official It has basically led to terminate the office of Mr. Pichit Nilthongkham, Chonburi Employment Officer who had become Director of the Office of Foreign Workers Administration by the virtue of the NCPO Order no. 70/2557 regarding the appointment of a government official. As a result, his directorship at the Office of Foreign Workers Administration shall cease as a result of the new order.

For more detail: http://www.ratchakitcha.soc.go.th/DATA/PDF/2558/E/097/1.PDF

 

  1. The Order of the Head of the National Council for Peace and Order no. 10/2558 regarding the combating of illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing It essentially provides for the establishment of the Command Center for Combating Illegal Fishing (CCCIF) as an ad hoc center directly under the Prime Minister with the Commander of the Royal Thai Navy as the Commander of CCCIF. With the structure and mandate of CCCIF, it is tasked with tacking problems as Thailand has received warnings from the European Union to develop measures for the prevention, suppression and eradication of Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing (IUU Fishing)

For more detail: http://www.ratchakitcha.soc.go.th/DATA/PDF/2558/E/099/1.PDF

The Thai Lawyers for Human Rights (TLHR) have the following observations to make;

  1. The Head of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) is inclined to incessantly invoke Section 44 of the 2014 Interim Constitution and the five administrative orders issued by virtue of the constitution are related to the exercise of power;
    • Regarding personnel management, the power of which could have been drawn from administrative power rested with Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha as the Prime Minister, and there is no need to invoke Section 44 to issue such orders
    • The termination of office or the appointment of committee members have their own procedure prescribed by law including the selection of members of an independent regular organization such as NBTC. In a normal circumstance, a Prime Minister would not have such power to do so.
  1. The existence and the invocation of Section 44 reflect ineffective management of the administrative power to properly invoke its power and use existing mechanisms to solve the problems, even though the junta has absolute power now. Many issues should be dealt with using legal provisions reviewed and approved by the National Legislative Assembly which has more filtering mechanisms.
  1. General public and even government officials are unable to review the accountability and lawfulness of such order and act by the Head of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) since Section 44 provides for constitutional justification for such orders. As a result, people have no guarantee to protect their rights and freedom and consistency of the legal status, even though Section 4 of the 2014 Interim Constitution provides for safeguard of rights and liberties.
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