A slight majority of people are not confident that constitutional amendments would help improve Thai politics, according to an opinion survey by the National Institute of Development Administration, or Nida Poll.
The poll was carried out on Aug 3-4 on 1,255 people aged 18 and over of various levels of education and occupations throughout the country.
Asked whether they knew that a public referendum is required to amend Section 256 of the constitution, making way for a council set up to draft a new constitution, a majority — or 75.22% — said they did not know about this while 24.78% said they did.
Regarding their overall opinions on the current proposal for constitutional amendments, 35.14% said Section 256 should be amended first to make way for the setting up of a constitution drafting council; 33.94% believed the constitution should be amended section by section; 13.87% thought the constitution should not be amended; and 17.05% had no answer or were not interested.
Asked whether they were confident Thai politics would improve if the constitution is amended, a majority, 53.31%, were uncertain — with 27.33% saying they were not confident at all, reasoning that changing the constitution alone is not enough to make an improvement and 25.98% not particularly confident, saying the constitution had been amended many times before but problems in Thai politics remained.
On the other side, 23.03% said they were moderately confident because the new constitution would come from the people, while 21.35% were highly confident, saying the new constitution would emphasise people’s participation, and that would help reduce conflict.
The rest, 2.31%, had no answer or were not interested.