Senators to sue Thaksin for seeking control over govt affairs

Khanittha Thepphajorn in Bangkok/The Nation
Asia News Network

Bangkok (The Nation/ANN) - Former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra could face charges for allegedly committing a constitutional offence by ordering Pheu Thai Party ministers and MPs via Skype to amend the Constitution and push for the 2-trillion baht (US$68 billion) loan for the country's infrastructure development.

Appointed Senator Paiboon Nititawan said he believed Thaksin had violated Article 68 of the Constitution by attempting to overthrow the country's democratic system and seeking to gain control over the country's administration when he addressed the Pheu Thai Party meeting through Skype last Tuesday.

He said he and other Senators would file a complaint with the Constitution Court seeking an investigation against Thaksin.

"The New York Times has reported that Thaksin uses Skype as a tool to run the country and join in Cabinet meetings," he said.

Paiboon said Thaksin had ordered Pheu Thai Party ministers and MPs to amend the Constitution to give the government more power and reduce the power of the courts, the Senate and independent agencies. "Thaksin's orders to them would enable him to gain control and power to run the country, in an unconstitutional way," he said.

Meanwhile, appointed Senator Somchai Sawaengkarn said he expected the country's political temperature to rise because ministerial directives have been issued on Friday to allow prisoners to be able to travel within limited zones. The privilege is given to four groups: prisoners whose lives may be in danger; prisoners whose parents, spouses are his financial dependants; prisoners who are ill and need continued treatments; and, prisoners who are given leniency. The four groups of people do not have to be detained in prison but are given electronic equipment through which their movements can be monitored.

Government chief whip Amnuay Klangpa said political temperatures may not rise this month because the amnesty bills and reconciliation bills will not be deliberated in Parliament during this session which ends in two weeks.

As Parliament is set to deliberate the 2-trillion baht loan bill before the session ends in such a short time, it is unlikely the amnesty and reconciliation bills would be on the agenda for deliberation in this session, he said.

Amnuay was responding to Pheu Thai party-list MP Niyom Worapanya's move to table an amnesty bill for House deliberation. He said the MP wanted to see the country move forward but he did not believe the bill would be brought up for deliberation within this Parliament session.