Resentment over Lazada ad spreads to other armed services
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Resentment over Lazada ad spreads to other armed services

Orders being filled at a Lazada warehouse in Samut Prakan's Bang Phli district. (Photo: Lazada Thailand)
Orders being filled at a Lazada warehouse in Samut Prakan's Bang Phli district. (Photo: Lazada Thailand)

After the army on Monday banned its soldiers and agencies from buying products through Lazada's online platform, the Royal Thai Armed Forces Command, air force and navy have also reacted, but in softer tones.

The order also banned Lazada vehicles from entering army areas.

The army's order was a reaction to a controversial online promotion for Lazada by transgender influencer Aniwat Prathumthin, better known by the social media alias Nara Crepe Katoey. In the video, she and a woman in a wheelchair were seen by many viewers as mocking the disabled.

The ad was for Lazada's 5.5 shopping festival campaign, produced by media agency Intersect Design Factory. Nara was contracted by Intersect to make the ad, which was shown on her Tik Tok account.

The video features Nara and a wheelchair-bound woman, identified as Thidarat Chaokuwiang, joking  about a borrowed blouse and discount clothing available online. Some netizens thought the outfit worn by the disabled character, who showed she could stand up, was an oblique reference to the royal family.

Late Monday night, Lt Gen Teerapong Pattamasing Na Ayutthaya, director general of the Civil Affairs Department and spokesman of the Royal Thai Armed  Forces Command, said Gen Chalermpol Srisawat, chief of the defence forces, was concerned about this matter because it had affected the feelings of Thai people.

The Royal Thai Armed Forces Command had issued an instruction to all personnel that they must comply with the military code of ethics and maintain strong allegiance to the nation, religion and the monarchy.

Air force spokesman AVM Boonlert Andara said air force personnel and their families had been asked to think carefully before buying products through Lazada's online platform, taking into consideration the promotional video that showed a disrespect for human values, especially for people with a disability or sickness.

Sources said ACM Napadet Thupatimiya, the air force chief, was unhappy with the controversial ad and had talked with air force personnel about this matter when he first learned of it. He did not issue a specific order, believing that they would all act with discretion.

Navy spokesman V/Adm Pokkrong Manathatphalin said navy chief Adm Somprasong Nilsamai was also concerned, and had asked that people view the ad with discretion.

He said the navy would like the public to adopt an attitude of "zero tolerance" toward any show of disrespect of human dignity.

The navy spokesman asked product producers, sellers and advertisers to make creative advertisements which promoted sympathy and understanding among people in a peaceful society.

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