PM Srettha defends appointment of Pichit Chuenban

Photo courtesy of Bangkok Post

Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin presented his defence to the Constitutional Court regarding the contentious appointment of politician Pichit Chuenban as PM Office minister.

The defence, submitted last Friday, was acknowledged by PM Srettha who refrained from divulging the specifics when questioned by the media.

“It’s more of a clarification. I have the duty to clarify, and I think I’ve covered it all.”

The 62 year old prime minister was required to submit his defence by Saturday, following the Constitutional Court’s acceptance of a petition last month. The petition seeks his removal over Pichit’s appointment during a recent Cabinet reshuffle.

This petition was brought forward by a group of caretaker senators, requesting the court to determine whether the Bangkok-born Srettha and Pichit should be dismissed under Section 170 (4) and (5) of the charter, which pertains to the ethics of Cabinet ministers.

Pichit received a six-month prison sentence in 2008 along with two colleagues after attempting to bribe Supreme Court officials with a paper bag containing 2 million baht. Critics argue that such a history disqualifies him from serving as a Cabinet minister.

Before the court accepted the petition, Pichit resigned, a move perceived as an effort to shield the Thai PM from potential legal complications. Consequently, the court decided to hear the case against the prime minister but dismissed the case against Pichit due to his resignation, reported Bangkok Post.

In related news, former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra hosted a critical meeting at his lavish Chan Song La Mansion in Bangkok’s Bang Phlat district last Friday, June 7. The gathering which featured political heavyweights and key family members, promises to tackle pressing issues that could reshape the Thai political landscape.

The high-stakes meeting saw the attendance of the Shinawatra clan and Potjaman Na Pombejra aka Damaphong, Thaksin’s ex-wife, who, despite their 2008 divorce, remains a pivotal figure within the ruling Pheu Thai Party.

In other news, Move Forward Party leader Chaithawat Tulathon quashed rumours that his party may align with the Pheu Thai Party to form a new government if PM Srettha is ousted by the Constitutional Court for gross ethical misconduct.

Bangkok NewsPolitics NewsThailand News

Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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