Yongyuth resigns from cabinet
- Published: 28/09/2012 at 04:28 PM
- Online news:
Yongyuth Wichaidit announced his resignation from the cabinet on Friday, resigning from the positions of deputy prime minister and interior minister in the face of mounting pressure over the controversial Alpine land case.
His resignation is effective on Oct 1, 2012. He remains Pheu Thai Party leader and party list MP.
"I made the decision some time back to quit the cabinet," Mr Yongyuth said at a press briefing
He refused to say who would be succeed him in the two positions.
"The succession issue will be discussed after Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra returns from New York, " Mr Yongyuth said. The prime minister is attending the UN General Assembly.
Yongyuth Wichaidit (Photo by Chanat Katanyu)
A party source said PM's Office Minister Niwatthamrong Bunsongphaisan is tipped to be acting deputy prime minister and interior minister until there is a cabinet reshuffle.
Mr Yongyuth sent a signal that he might resign when he did not attend the cabinet meeting on Tuesday. His move came after the opposition threatened to censure him.
Noppadon Pattama, legal adviser of fugitive former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, said before Mr Yongyuth made the announcement that the Pheu Thai leader had decided to step down from the cabinet.
Thaksin did not pressure Mr Yongyuth to resign, Mr Noppadon added.
The Pheu Thai source said Thaksin told Mr Yongyuth that he did not mind if he wanted to stay on and Ms Yingluck also wanted him to remain in the cabinet.
Pressure has mounted on Mr Yongyuth since the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) found him guilty of malfeasance in office in ten years ago.
According to the NACC, he acted unlawfully in his handling of the Alpine land case, approving the illegal sale of monastic land, while deputy permanent secretary for the interior and acting permanent secretary in 2002.
The ministry's committee decided to expel him, with the expulsion order retroactively taking effect from Sept 30, 2002.
However, the committee has reportedly claimed that the expulsion is also retroactively overruled by the 2007 Exoneration Act, even though Mr Yongyuth has served no punishment.
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- Writer: Online Reporters
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