Bhumjaithai ministers will quit if herbicides are not banned

Lobbying is intensifying over a final decision to ban three controversial herbicides – paraquat, glyphosate and chlorpyrifos. With farmers, agri-business interests, environmental activists and social media all putting pressure on decision-makers to sway their decision, the biggest pressure is from within the ruling Palang Pracharat government.

Increasing pressure is now being applied to the National Hazardous Substances Committee after the Deputy PM and Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul announced that the Bhumjaithai party’s ministers, who oversee the use of the herbicide trio, will resign if the committee does not decide to completely ban the three toxic chemicals.

The resignation of the minority partys’ Ministers from the coalition government would force Palang Pracharat into risky minority government territory where they would lose any no-confidence motion.

Speaking at a hotel in the southern province of Phatthalung, along with six other Bhumjaithai party MPs, Mr. Anutin reaffirmed the party’s demand, in the public interest, for a complete ban on the herbicides.

He said that two representatives of the Health ministry, who sit on the NHSC, will definitely vote to ban the substances as he called on the committee for an open vote, instead of a secret ballot as it had done in the past.

According to Thai PBS World, when asked about the opinion of Mr. Chadha Thaiseth, an MP from Uthai Thani province and elder brother of Deputy Agriculture Minister Mananya Thaiseth who suggested the party’s ministers overseeing the use of the herbicides must resign if they are not banned, the deputy prime minister said they were ready to quit “if we cannot control those people.”

Mr. Anutin did not elaborate which ministers should quit, but it is understood he was referring to himself and Ms. Mananya.

The National Hazardous Substances Committee is yet to set the date for a final decision on the ban.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

Bhumjaithai ministers will quit if herbicides are not banned | News by Thaiger

PHOTO: Deputy PM and Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul

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