By Thai Newsroom Reporters
A JOINT HOUSE/SENATE meeting on legislation to discontinue the senators’ power to vote for prime minister was today (Feb.8) adjourned again due to lack of a quorum.
After three hours of waiting to no avail for MPs and senators to make a quorum for the joint House/Senate session, Parliament President Chuan Leekpai was bound to suspend again the legislation to amend the coup junta-designed constitution to the extent that the unelected senators’ role of picking a prime minister alongside the elected MPs be terminated.
Such joint House/Senate meetings need no less than one half the total of the MPs and senators combined, currently accounting for 665, to make a quorum.
But only 308 lawmakers were reported to attend the joint session which needed at least 333, prompting Chuan to call it a day.
A total of 95 senators staged what appeared to be a quiet protest against the legislation by taking leave from today’s joint House/Senate session, leaving 110 others attending and others being absent without leave.
Of a total of six joint House/Senate meetings held since last month, only one has proceeded with an adequate quorum.
The Pheu Thai-led opposition bloc has lodged the constitution amendment bill to keep the unelected senators out of the business of picking the head of a post-election government and to call for all partisan candidates for prime minister to be named only from among elected MPs and no outsiders.
Top: Parliament meeting chamber. Photo: Thai Rath
Front Page: Parliament President Chuan Leekpai. Photo: Matichon
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