Connect with us


Thai PM uses Covid fears to persuade protesters to postpone Saturday rally




PHOTO: Will Langston

The Thai PM Prayut Chan-o-cha is rolling out his biggest weapon, fear, to try and persuade anti-government protesters to postpone tomorrow’s rally at the Thammasat University Tha Prachan campus. He asked them to consider putting off their plans to hold the rally at least “until the Covid-19 outbreak is over”.

In a televised address, he asked Thais to unite in ending the Covid-19 crisis “before focusing on political issues”. PM Prayut has not mentioned ‘Covid’ as an issue before the other student rallies.

The rally has been planned for this Saturday with student and anti-government groups demanding amendments to the 2017 Thai constitution, dissolution of the parliament, an end to intimidation of government critics and changes to the role of the Thai Head of State.

Whilst Thailand has largely contained the worst of the Covid-19 virus, reaching 101 days without a local transmission, before a handful of 3 local transmission cases over the past 2 weeks. But Prayut claimed the rallies would “put Thailand at the risk of a 2nd wave of Covid-19 infections”. He went on to say the 2nd wave could affect the livelihoods of more than 10 million people “and further exacerbate the economic situation”. Prayut warned that protester should “not do anything that would prompt another lockdown”.

His appeal, using Covid-19 as his main argument to stop the rally, will probably do little to dampen the enthusiasm of the anti-government groups. More likely, the forecast for a 90% chance of rain around Bangkok tomorrow will be a greater deterrent.

Thai PM uses Covid fears to persuade protesters to postpone Saturday rally | News by Thaiger

The protest organisers were hoping they could attract some 50,000 people to the rally but security officials say they predict the numbers will be more like 20,000. The August 19 Democracy Monument rally attracted up to 10,000.

Speaking about the planned protest, the PM has said, numerous times, that he wants to avoid any violence “at all costs”.

“I respect your opinions, but today Thailand is feeling the pain that we have to urgently tackle first, and that is to mitigate the economic losses brought on by the outbreak. We should not worsen the situation.”

During his TV speech last night, Prayut warned the protesters that political unrest would delay economic recovery, as it would dent investors’ confidence and deter tourists from visiting Thailand once the borders are open.

“Rallies will also shift the government’s focus from solving economic problems. Many places are already experiencing a second wave of infections, but Thailand has been able to successfully curb transmissions thanks to the collaboration of related parties.”

SOURCE: Nation Thailand


Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forum
🔔 Subscribe to our daily newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.



  1. Avatar


    Friday, September 18, 2020 at 10:53 am

    Great article Thaiger, unlike other media outlets, you have stated the truth on this matter. The heading is spot on and the content speaks the truth. Using COVID as an excuse is just pathetic coming from a man that has done more damage to this country than COVID has. I suspect that pressure is mounting around him to step down and is using any excuse to try to delay the inevitable. I am also confused as to why he is worried now as the students have already held rallies on numerous occasions since August but never heard the dictator say anything, AND, on top of that, no COVID outbreak has come from those other rallies. He is really pathetic and should step down. He is unfit to run a country

  2. Avatar


    Friday, September 18, 2020 at 11:52 am

    Who is fit to run a country? I don’t think anyone is. A new government won’t fix anything. Dissolve the current govt, and then just stop. Let free markets sort out the country, region, and world. Something no government has ever let it be tried..

    • Avatar


      Friday, September 18, 2020 at 5:31 pm

      Anyone but this idiot. And anyone not connected to the military. My personal preference would be Thaksin. All personal corruption aside, he did more for this country than anyone else. Plus he is a businessman and knows what is good for the economy. But obviously that’s not going to happen

  3. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Friday, September 18, 2020 at 11:57 am

    patty has said it all.
    This perpetual excuse of threat of covid is beginning to become boring from this P.M.
    It is now obvious he is using this tiny threat of covid death to run a dictatorship without elections.

    • Avatar


      Friday, September 18, 2020 at 5:33 pm

      well said too mate

  4. Avatar


    Friday, September 18, 2020 at 1:51 pm

    “He asked them to consider putting off their plans to hold the rally at least “until the Covid-19 outbreak is over”.

    well “asked them to consider” is a bit softer than demanding and threatening.

    But to continue the propaganda of a deadly virus that has killed 58 people in 8 months and had no medical effect on 99.995% of the population… Isn’t it about time to throw in the towel and call it all off, or resign?

  5. Avatar


    Monday, September 21, 2020 at 8:15 pm

    Fesr of what…..Thailand is covid free !

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

If you have story ideas, a restaurant to review, an event to cover or an issue to discuss, contact The Thaiger editorial staff.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Tourism13 hours ago

Alcohol ban predicted to damage Thailand’s reopening, reputation

Crime14 hours ago

Woman who cut safety rope of workers offers feeble excuse

Video14 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Dirty gloves probe, Bocelli & Lisa, ASEAN fallout | October 27

Sponsored22 hours ago

Top 5 dental clinics by Dental Corporations PLC in Thailand

Welcome back to Thailand!

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in Thailand - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages!

Coronavirus (Covid-19)15 hours ago

Police seize Covid-19 antiviral drugs allegedly stolen by hospital manager

Thailand15 hours ago

Student dies after receiving second Covid-19 vaccine shot

Coronavirus (Covid-19)15 hours ago

Foreign Ministry denies blocking Poland’s donation of vaccines

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand15 hours ago

Travellers now exempt from quarantine advised to directly contact AQ hotels for refund

Crime16 hours ago

Legal proceedings expected this week for “Joe Ferrari” death in custody case

Coronavirus (Covid-19)17 hours ago

Wednesday Covid Update: 8,452 new cases; provincial totals

Bangkok17 hours ago

Police bust Bangkok pub serving alcohol, 61 arrested

Bangkok17 hours ago

Russell Crowe bids Bangkok goodbye after much-praised tweets

Thailand17 hours ago

Thai government forms panel to probe the export of used medical gloves

ASEAN18 hours ago

Myanmar no-show a focus as ASEAN summit gets underway

Drugs18 hours ago

Police arrest 3 vans in Korat with 1.82 tonnes of marijuana

Thailand18 hours ago

Sedatives and painkillers, Thai new year – 3 million USD on 2 people | Thaiger Bites | Ep. 47

Thailand1 month ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism8 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism8 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism8 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11