Connect with us

Thailand

Judgment day for Yingluck

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published

 on 

PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– Thailand news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Judgment day for former PM Yingluck
The Nation / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: Pressure is mounting on the National Legislative Assembly (NLA), which votes today on whether to impeach former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra and two former parliamentary speakers accused of wrongdoings.

Supporters and detractors of the three targeted politicians – Ms Yingluck, former Parliament president Somsak Kiartsuranon and his ex-deputy Nikom Wairatpanij – have urged the NLA members to vote with their conscience.

Social media yesterday was agog with campaigns from both sides. People supporting impeachment said it was a necessary step towards national reform while those opposing impeachment warned of renewed conflicts if the NLA votes to punish the trio.

Observers, meanwhile, expect the impeachment vote to polarize the nation. “No matter which way it goes, there will be those who agree and those who disagree. It won’t please everyone,” Reuters quoted NLA vice president Peerasak Porchit as saying.

Either way, the vote would create dissension against the junta, said Paul Chambers, director of research at Chiang Mai University’s Institute of South East Asian Affairs. “Ultimately, no matter which way the NLA votes, it will create dissension against the NCPO by either pro- or anti-Thaksin elements of Thai society,” he said, referring to former premier Thaksin Shinawatra.

Support from at least three-fifths of the 220-member NLA, or 132 votes, is required to impeach any of the targeted politicians.

An impeached politician will face a five-year ban from holding political office.

The National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) accused Ms Yingluck of negligence of duty by failing to curb corruption in her government’s rice-pledging scheme, and former House speaker Somsak and Senate ex-speaker Nikom of violating the constitution while chairing parliamentary meetings on charter amendments.

The People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC), which held street protests against Ms Yingluck’s government, yesterday called on the NLA members to decide with their conscience.

“It is now the NLA’s task to prove that morality and ethics exist in Thai society,” PDRC spokesman Akanat Promphan said in a phone interview with The Nation.

He said Ms Yingluck failed to provide satisfactory answers to NACC’s accusations in her closing statement.

Red-shirt leader Kwanchai Praipana yesterday said Ms Yingluck is the latest of the people close to former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra who are victims of “political persecution”.

He also said that as the country has been under the control of the National Council for Peace and Order, the red shirts have been unable to do much in campaigning publicly about this matter.

A politician from Ms Yingluck’s Pheu Thai Party, Somkid Chueakong, said yesterday that he expected increased voter support for the party in the next general election if the NLA votes to impeach Ms Yingluck. Defence Minister Prawit Wongsuwan yesterday criticized certain red-shirt leaders for having warned that a decision to impeach Ms Yingluck could lead to bloodbath or riots.

“Such talk is not good for the country, which is now progressing well. They must use more brains before such talk,” he said.

Mr Prawit, who is also deputy PM, said the government was not seeking revenge or acting against anyone. “We are just solving the country’s problems and helping the country to move forward.”

Yingluck ‘satisfied’

Meanwhile, Ms Yingluck said after presenting her closing statement before the NLA that she felt satisfied for “explaining everything” to the assembly members. “I feel happy,” she said when asked to describe her feelings.

Ms Yingluck’s lawyers were also satisfied with her explanations in response to all the allegations against her, said Pichit Chuenban, one of the legal team members.

He also said that NACC member Wicha Mahakhun, who represented the agency in presenting the closing statement yesterday, appeared to rely on rhetoric in a bid to persuade the NLA members.

The lawyer also urged NLA members to carefully consider all the documents presented by Ms Yingluck’s legal team to support her case, before voting today.

Mr Wicha yesterday also voiced satisfaction with his closing statement. “Whether the NLA will vote for impeachment or not, we have created a new standard for the country’s reform,” he said. Before leaving Parliament yesterday, the ex-PM was handed flowers by a small group of supporters. Ms Yingluck is expected to watch a broadcast of the NLA vote today at SC Park Hotel, which is owned by her family, according to a source close to her.

Starting at 10am, the NLA is scheduled to hold a secret ballot whether to impeach Mr Somsak and Mr Nikom, followed by a vote on Ms Yingluck’s case later in the day.

NLA member Wanlop Tangkananurak said that after listening to their closing remarks yesterday, he feels that both sides had not produced any new information that was different from their opening remarks last week.

He stressed that reconciliation and impeachment are entirely different issues and the NLA members should make decisions based strictly on legal principles.

“I can’t answer for other NLA members but mention of the word ‘reconciliation’ was less frequent during our impeachment conversation,” he said.

Regarding the contrasting information produced by both sides, including the estimated total loss caused by the rice scheme, Mr Wanlop said in his opinion the official figure produced by the Rice Scheme Accounting Committee, which the NACC used as its reference, has more credibility because it came from an official committee.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

 

Get more from The Thaiger

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

image

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.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 hour ago

Chulalongkorn University progressing on domestic mRNA vaccine

Koh Samui6 hours ago

Black Club Covid-19 outbreak on Koh Samui widens

Thailand6 hours ago

Possible earthquake in Nonthaburi this morning

Sponsored9 hours ago

Experience Phuket’s Islands with 5 Star Marine

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!

Best of7 hours ago

Chiang Mai’s 8 most indulgent spa hotels

Coronavirus (Covid-19)7 hours ago

Bangkok Bang Sue scam under investigation, 7 volunteers and counting to be questioned

Thailand7 hours ago

Thailand News Today | ‘Crowding’ due to camera angles, train hospitals | July 29

image
Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand8 hours ago

Spray guns ineffective and dangerous, says TFDA

Drugs8 hours ago

Methamphetamine pills hidden in instant noodle packets delivered for Covid patient

Coronavirus (Covid-19)9 hours ago

Anonymous “Dr Sandy” says pray the Covid situation gets better

Coronavirus (Covid-19)9 hours ago

Thursday Covid Update: Record high of 17,669 new cases; provincial totals

Phuket10 hours ago

Phuket governor eyes construction camps for stricter Covid measures

Best of11 hours ago

Top 5 spas in Chiang Mai

Coronavirus (Covid-19)11 hours ago

Health Minister says Bang Sue not crowded, blames “camera angles”

Cambodia12 hours ago

Cambodia plans lockdown with 8 provinces that border Thailand

Bangkok13 hours ago

Sleeper trains in Bangkok to become isolation facilities for Covid-19 patients

Thailand5 months ago

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

Tourism5 months ago

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

Phuket5 months ago

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

Tourism5 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

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

Tourism5 months ago

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

Thailand6 months ago

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

Thailand6 months ago

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

Thailand6 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

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

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8

Trending