Thai Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam (Source: bangkokpost.com)

Hanoi (VNA) – Thailand’s ruling junta will lift fully its ban on political activities from December 16 – 27 to clear the way for a national election to be held in February next year, according to Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam.

The Deputy PM revealed the timeline during a press conference on November 8. He said the general election will take place on February 24, 2019 at the earliest, but did not rule out the possibility of the first poll since the May 2014 coup being delayed again.

In September, the Thai government eased the ban on politics to enable parties to prepare for the vote. Accordingly, political parties are permitted to elect leaders, recruit new members and hold general meetings if they are able to summon at least 250 members. However, election campaigning, including public gatherings of more than five people, are still forbidden.

The Thai government has promised to hold an election between February and May 2019, following repeated delays, due to reasons relating to constitutional and legislative issues.

After the military staged a coup in 2014 to oust then Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, the National Council for Peace and Order of Thailand announced various dates for the general election but it has been postponed several times. –VNA