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Unvaccinated MPs must show negative Covid-19 result before each parliament session

Tanutam Thawan



Stock photo via Pixabay

Under new measures for Thai Cabinet sessions, members of parliament who have not been vaccinated against Covid-19 must test negative for the coronavirus before each new meeting. The parliament president Chuan Leekpai says the new orders are to prevent the spread of Covid-19 among Cabinet members. If an MP has not been vaccinated and does not show a negative result for a recent Covid-19 test, then they will not be allowed to enter the chamber.

The next parliamentary session is scheduled for May 22. Thai officials will hold a meeting today to go over Covid-19 prevention and disease control measures to prevent the spread of the virus at the next session. But some MPs are concerned about the safety of today’s meeting due to the outbreak in Bangkok, with hundreds of Covid-19 infections reported each day.

MP Anan Phonamnuay told reporters that he and the government chief whip urged for the meeting to be postponed and rescheduled for later this month when more vaccine doses and supplies arrive.

“I totally understand that the new parliamentary session is important. But if that comes with health risks that may result in new deaths, will it still be worth it?”

In the recent wave of infections, Bangkok has reported more than 20,000 Covid-19 cases since April 1. The Covid-19 death rate has also increased significantly over the past month. Cases in the recent wave started off in clusters in nightlife areas, primarily the fashionable Thong Lor district. During that time, around a third of Cabinet members reportedly self-isolated after coming in contact with infected people.

Discussion on the new budget bill for the fiscal year 2022, which starts October 2021, is set for May 31 and June 2. Chuan warned that if the debilitation is delayed, there’s a possibility it could affect the budgetary management timeframe, and then potentially impact the Thai economy.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post


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Local Thai journalist speaking fluent Thai and English. Tanutam studied in Khon Kaen before attending Bangkok’s Chulalongkhorn University.

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