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Rights of ‘ordinary people’ in focus as 1 bln vote in Asia

BANGKOK (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Rights over land and forests, a push for LGBT+ equality, and getting more women on the ballot are some top election issues in Thailand, India and Indonesia as more than 1 billion people prepare to go to the polls, including many first-time voters. The candidates’ platforms reflect a growing concern in those countries over widening economic inequality and the marginalisation of minority communities, analysts say. Thailand is holding its first election after five years of military rule In Thailand, which will hold a general election on March 24 – its first since the military seized control in 2014 – candidates for prime minister include a transgender woman, a former student activist, and a human rights campaigner from the rural northeast. A total of 52 million Thais aged 18 and above are eligible to vote, of whom 14 percent will do so for the first time.     The contest broadly pits the party of junta leader Prayuth Chan-ocha against populist parties loyal to ousted prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra. But there are also several newly formed parties in the race, some of them campaigning for greater rights for farmers and minorities. Pauline Ngarmpring of the Mahachon Party is Thailand’s first transgender candidate for prime minister, and she has made rights for LGBT+ people and sex workers among her priorities. Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit, a 40-year-old billionaire who is a favourite with young voters, has spoken about economic inequality in the country, which has the world’s biggest income gap, according to a 2018 report by Swiss investment firm Credit Suisse. Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit, leader of the Future Forward Party, takes a selfie with his supporters during a campaign rally in Bangkok, Thailand, February 20, 2019. REUTERS/Soe Zeya Tun And at the Commoners’ Party founder Kittichai Ngamchaipisit is a social activist who... If you wish to read this full breaking news headline, plus more articles from around Thailand and Asia like, Rights of ‘ordinary people’ in focus as 1 bln vote in Asia, simply click on 'Read full story' below, but 1st please give us a 'LIKE' or 'SHARE' before you leave. Thank you Rights of ‘ordinary people’ in focus as 1 bln vote in Asia

 

 

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Published By: Thailand Business News - Saturday, 23 March

 

 

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