Scandal rocks PM Srettha: Ethics violation accusation

Photo courtesy of Bangkok Post

Thailand Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin remains resolute amid an ethics complaint that could see him suspended. While on an official visit to Italy on Sunday, PM Srettha addressed the brewing controversy.

A group of acting senators filed a complaint with the Constitutional Court, accusing him of violating the code of ethics in his recent appointment of PM’s Office Minister Pichit Chuenban.

Despite the potential fallout, Srettha remains undeterred.

“No, I won’t lose my concentration. I have a team of working staff and we are confident in our innocence, but I do not want to elaborate. It would be pressuring the Constitutional Court.”

The 62 year old Thai prime minister emphasised that he respects the checks on his government and views them as normal. His team is preparing a thorough explanation to prove their innocence.

The controversy centres on Pichit, previously an adviser to the Bangkok-born politician and former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s lawyer in the infamous lunchbox bribe scandal. This scandal has raised serious questions about Pichit’s suitability for a Cabinet position.

Pichit served prison time for contempt of court after attempting to bribe officials in a high-profile land case involving Thaksin. On June 25, 2008, the Supreme Court sentenced Pichit and two colleagues to six months in prison.

They allegedly tried to bribe Supreme Court officials by offering a lunchbox containing 2 million baht in cash a fortnight earlier. This case, known as the Ratchadaphisek land case, resulted in a two-year prison sentence for Thaksin in 2008, reported Bangkok Post.

The Constitutional Court is set to meet on Thursday to decide whether to accept the senators’ ethics petition regarding Srettha and Pichit.

In related news, former Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s potential return from exile sparks intrigue over her legal fate, mirroring her brother Thaksin’s tumultuous history, claims the Shinawatras’ lawyer. Pichit is a figure linked to PM Srettha’s Cabinet due to his close allegiance to the Shinawatras.

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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