Kata Rocks
BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET Kata Rocks
The Phuket News Novosti Phuket Khao Phuket

Login | Create Account | Search


Ruling incenses anti-government protesters

Ruling incenses anti-government protesters

THAILAND: The Constitutional Court’s unanimous vote to clear Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha of a conflict of interest in staying in an army house after his retirement has sparked outrage among anti-government protesters.

politics
By Bangkok Post

Thursday 3 December 2020, 09:00AM


Anti-government protesters converge at the Lat Phrao intersection yesterday (Dec 2) after the ruling on Gen Prayut was delivered. Photo: Pattarapong Chatpattarasill

Anti-government protesters converge at the Lat Phrao intersection yesterday (Dec 2) after the ruling on Gen Prayut was delivered. Photo: Pattarapong Chatpattarasill

The protesters, who returned to Lat Phrao intersection in a mass gathering yesterday to hear the ruling, have threatened to intensify their rallies.

Somyot Prueksakasemsuk, leader of the June 24 Democracy Group, spoke to the crowd, saying nothing was illegal from now on. He added the ruling was not a surprise.

“The people will stop Prayut. It won’t be long until he is out of office.

“People will rise up and end this vicious cycle that keeps Prayut in power,” Mr Somyot said.

Arnon Nampa, another protest co-leader, told the crowd that calls will be made to reform the judiciary.

A new precedent had been set, he added, as an unqualified person remaining in a state-owned house free of charge, which works to the benefit of the occupant, would not contradict the law or regulations.

“Thanks to Gen Prayut, this new principle will be adopted regardless of the law,” he said.

“Next year, the protests will grow in intensity even more,” he told the rally.

Panupong “Mike” Jadnok, a Ratsadon anti-government leader, also spoke to the protesters, saying the protests have been galvanised and they would continue with even more energy.

Shinawat “Bright” Chankrachang, a protest co-leader, compared Gen Prayut’s case with that of the late prime minister Samak Sundaravej.

Unlike Gen Prayut, Samak did not survive the Constitutional Court ruling over a cooking show he was found guilty of hosting while he held the post of prime minister.

In September 2008, the court stripped Samak of his premiership for violating the constitution for accepting payments to host the cooking show on TV.

Mr Shinawat said he has lost faith in Thailand’s justice system and insisted there could be no unity without justice.

Dan About Thailand

Chaithawat Tulathon, secretary-general of Move Forward Party (MFP), said injustices have ensued since the May 2014 coup despite desperate calls for justice and democracy to be restored.

“We still think Gen Prayut should resign to douse this fire [of political conflict] and create more trust,” he said.

Yesterday, all nine Constitutional Court judges found Gen Prayut not guilty for staying in an army residence while in his role as prime minister.

His occupancy was allowed under a 2005 army regulation, which lets army chiefs stay on base after they retire if they continue to serve the country well, according to the unanimous ruling read out at the court.

The court said the regulation had come into effect before Gen Prayut was the army chief, and other former army commanders have also received the same benefits.

The court said Gen Prayut served the country well as army chief, and the army regulation allowed its former commanders to use such houses, along with subsidising utility bills.

Gen Prayut has stayed at the military house at the 1st Infantry Regiment on Phahon Yothin Road in Bangkok since shortly after he became army commander-in-chief in 2010, according to the army.

“When he became prime minister on Aug 24, 2014, Gen Prayut was also the army chief on active duty. He was therefore qualified to stay in the house in his capacity as the army chief.

“When he [Gen Prayut] retired on Sept 30, 2014, he was still qualified to stay as a former army chief.

“A prime minister who had not been an army chief could not have stayed at the house,” the court said in its ruling.

Meanwhile, Prasert Chanthararuangthong, secretary-general of the main opposition Pheu Thai Party which sought the court ruling in the case, said the judgement may not have explained all the queries raised in the complaint against Gen Prayut which was submitted to the court.

No further details were available, and Gen Prayut had yet to respond last night.

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.

CAPTCHA

Be the first to comment.

 

Have a news tip-off? Click here

 

Phuket community
Tourism fee to help insure foreigners visiting the kingdom

Now, let me see,. 300 baht times no tourist= 0 baht. Brilliant...(Read More)


Tourism fee to help insure foreigners visiting the kingdom

Amazing Thailand. Not only can they provide medical cover for their own people with the 30B health c...(Read More)


Phuket officials put illegal dumping on the agenda

The main problem is the mentality of the locals. In 25 years here I've not seen any improvement ...(Read More)


Prime Minister to weigh in on legalising gambling

OK. Legalize gambling casinos in Thailand, however, should be 100% owned & operated, financed &a...(Read More)


Even with lower efficacy COVID vaccine can save lives, says expert

Sinovac for The China Virus is all part of China's failed Belt & Road Initiative. The Trump ...(Read More)


Phuket officials put illegal dumping on the agenda

What citizens see about all dumps around, sure Phuket officialdom sees that too. Why Officialdom ign...(Read More)


Tourism fee to help insure foreigners visiting the kingdom

for 34 baht, I'm guessing the insurance will cover a trip to Patong Hospital to get some bandage...(Read More)


Phuket officials put illegal dumping on the agenda

Island-wide issue for sure, but especially bad in BangTao area, because not only does everyone know ...(Read More)


Phuket officials put illegal dumping on the agenda

@Foot I honestly wonder what the cops do all day. I know they have a big force as is evident when a...(Read More)


Prime Minister to weigh in on legalising gambling

The only downside I can think of is idiots losing money that they need to live on, but they'd pr...(Read More)