Abhisit calls for ‘rebranding’ of Democrats at Pattaya conference

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Former Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva used an appearance at a Pattaya democracy conference to call on lieutenants to reshape the Democratic Party’s public image before the country goes to the polls again.

In his June 22 speech at the Cape Dara Resort in Naklua, Abhisit laid out the “next steps” for the Democrats, who were trounced last year’s elections by Pheu Thai Party. It was the first time senior party leaders have met with lower-level representatives from eastern and central Thailand to lay out principles and priorities aimed at reshaping the party’s image.

Former Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva arrives at Cape Dara Resort in Naklua with Surat Mekarawarakul, CEO of Mike Group. Former Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva arrives at Cape Dara Resort in Naklua with Surat Mekarawarakul, CEO of Mike Group.

The opposition leader said the Democrats objectives remained the same: to serve the people and monitor complaints made by citizens. However, he said, many people don’t understand the Democrat mission, getting their only information on party priorities during the height of election campaigning.

Therefore, Abhisit said, it was the responsibility of lower-level party bosses to organize activities and projects to bring new party members into the fold.

Abhisit laid out 9 policy priorities; four focusing on society, two on the economy, a pair related to politics and one related to Thailand’s entrance into the 2015 ASEAN Community.

Deputy party chiefs, who spoke of the need to “rebrand” the Democratic Party to be more appealing to voters, followed the former premier on stage. MP Jurin Lasksanwisit added that the public needs to learn more about the law and their legal rights.