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With only three days before the historic August referendum, many voters in the south of Thailand have yet to receive a full copy of the draft charter. A southern referendum watchdog said the booklets from the junta-appointed charter drafters distort the actual content of the draft.
On Thursday, 4 August 2016, Mangsot Mate, President of Referendum Monitoring Groups in the Southern Border Provinces, told the media that most people in southern Thailand have not received the full version of the draft charter, which will be voted on in the 7 August referendum. Matichon Online reported.
According to Matichon Online, the network has contacted the Election Commission of Thailand (ECT) and found that it has published only a million copies of the draft, meaning that the remaining 50 million voters across the country will not have a chance to read the draft before the referendum. The network also condemned the booklets from the Constitution Drafting Committee (CDC), which have been widely distributed, for distorting the actual content of the draft.
“The booklets (from the CDC) don’t give much information and distort some specific content in the draft. For example, the booklet’s sections on education and healthcare services are different from the actual text of the draft. The network sees this as an attempt to conceal the truth. By not distributing copies of the draft, the junta is disrespecting the voters who own the country’s sovereign power,” Matichon Online quoted Mangsot as saying.
The Referendum Monitoring Groups in the Southern Border Provinces comprise 34 civil society organizations from the six provinces of Songkhla, Yala, Pattani, Narathiwat, Satun and Phatthalung.
The network representatives speaks to the media at the press conference (source: Matichon Online)
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