A ruling is scheduled next month to determine whether non-Thais will be counted as part of the population for calculating the number of constituency members of parliament (MPs) for each province in Thailand.
The Constitutional Court is reported to have accepted the petition from the Election Commission (EC) concerning this issue following divisive opinions on EC calculations.
The criticism follows expected changes to the number of constituency MPs by the EC in eight provinces – namely Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai, Tak, Samut Sakhon, Udon Thani, Lop Buri, Nakhon Si Thammarat and Pattani. The proportion of non-Thais in these provinces is considered to have an influence on the number of constituency MPs, with three provinces having fewer seats and five having more.
There are 400 constituencies across Thailand’s 77 provinces, each with a single MP. According to the latest census, one MP will represent 162,766 Thai individuals out of a total population of 65,106,481, as opposed to one per 165,226 persons, including Thais and non-Thais.