Thaksin 'not dead', 'to visit Chiang Mai'
- Published: 1/04/2013 at 03:49 PM
- Online news:
Deposed former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra wrote on his Twitter page on Monday that he is alive and that reports of his death in Dubai spread across various social media are only an April's Fool Day hoax.
Stories spread on Monday that Thaksin was in a black limousine that overturned on a highway in Dubai after his driver lost control.
According to the prankster, the Al Jazeera news agency reported that a speeding car hit Thaksin's limousine because the driver suffered a sudden heart attack. Thaksin was critically injured and died in hospital.
Thaksin posted: "I have been receiving several calls from my family, acquaintances and red-shirt supporters regarding the news that I was in a car crash and that I was possibly dead. I would like to tell everybody that I am fine.
"Today is April 1, or April's Fool Day, and it is normal that people joke around for fun. [Thais] might not enjoy the hoax but they should not take it seriously because lying once a year is better than lying the whole year, hahahaha."
Panthongtae "Oak" Shinawatra, son of the self-exiled former prime minister, responded on his Facebook page that the prank was organised and went too far.
He posted a picture of his father standing on an escalator at Suvarnabhumi airport and explained that he left Dubai on flight EK374 early Monday morning, landed at Thailand's national airport, and is travelling to Chiang Mai province.
Panthongtae Shinawatra posted a photo of his father standing on an escalator at Suvarnabhumi airport. (From Panthongtae's Facebook Page)
"Perhaps there might be a surprise at the upcoming by-election in Chiang Mai. Pheu Thai will not nominate Jeh Daeng (Thaksin's sister Yaowapa Wongsawat). The new candidate instead will be … Pol Lt Col Thaksin Shinawatra," his son said.
Meanwhile, many Thai netizens said they were disappointed that the report was a hoax.
"If this story's true, I'll party seven days and seven nights," a netizen said on a Thai forum.
Death hoaxes on social networks on April's Fools Day are common. Celebrities such as Sir Paul McCartney, forrmer member of the Beatles, and renowned comedian Bill Cosby were some of the past victims.
About the author
- Writer: Online Reporters
Position: Online Reporters