“If anyone talks about fear, we should tell them that, if we are afraid, we will never be able to step forward.”
Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit, Future Forward’s 40 year old leader, assured the public yesterday that the party is not aggressive and will not seek to turn everything upside down and inside out “but move Thai society forward whereby democracy is not an alternative, but the only path for the country.”
This was the central message as he gave his vision speech at Thammasat University, on the first anniversary of the founding of the party (June 8, 2018).
In just one year Future Forward has gone from zero to hero in the minds of many Thais, especially the younger generation, who flocked to the new political alternative giving the new party third place in the general election on March 24 this year, ahead of the Democrats and other more established parties.
Last Wednesday Thanathorn faced off against Junta leader Prayut Chan-o-cha in a vote for PM – a vote stacked against him with the Senate participating in the parliamentary election and voting as a bloc for the incumbent PM.
The Future Forward party says they aim to transform Thailand into a more livable society, where its people are not divided by hate politics, the military is democratic, with a decentralised bureaucracy and no monopolisation by big business, according to Thai PBS.
Noting that the next battle, to restore the power to the people, will be tougher, he pleaded for support from the people to push for new ideas in order to put to rest the politics of fear, the “politics of yesterday”.
“Our Future Forward party’s politics are about hope. They said, if the country is without Khun Loong (Gen Prayut), it will collapse. If anyone talks about fear, we should tell them that, if we are afraid, we will never be able to step forward. Their politics is about yesterday, but ours is about tomorrow. Their politics means that we must not mess with their power, but if we don’t mess with it, they will just carry on reaping the benefits.”
The firebrand Future Forward party leader vowed to shake up local politics by sending candidates to contest, in the initial stage, 10-20 provinces when local elections take place end of this year, in order to put an end to nepotism, with the parents being members of parliament as their children become local administrators.
Painted as a Thaksin puppet by his detractors, Thanathorn has always said he has no one controlling him and that Future Forward is setting its own policies, and has no links with Pheu Thai other than the desire to end the rule of the Army and elites in Thailand.
PHOTO: Thai PBS