MFP urges Srettha to change mind on Isoc

MFP urges Srettha to change mind on Isoc

Party pushing bill to amend 2008 act

The Move Forward Party (MFP) on Wednesday demanded that Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin change his mind and second its bill seeking to dissolve the Internal Security Operations Command (Isoc).

It wants the bill sent to the House of Representatives for deliberation. The MFP's demand followed Mr Srettha's confirmation that he has no intention to push to close Isoc.

Submitted by MFP list-MP Romadon Panjor in July and now published on parliament's website for an online public hearing, the bill proposing to amend the 2008 Internal Security Act is categorised as a finance-related bill.

Since the House speaker decided the bill was financial legislation, the premier is authorised under Section 133 of the constitution to approve it and forward it to the House for debate, Mr Romadon said on Facebook on Wednesday.

"I think the PM should not be worried about any powers or [external] influence because the number of votes [on the bill] in the House will decide [whether it should be passed into law or not]," he wrote.

However, if Mr Srettha rejects the bill and cuts short its chance of being deliberated in the House, his reputation of being a civilian prime minister accused of being wrapped around the military's little finger will be self-evident, according to Mr Romadon.

He also challenged all other coalition parties, especially the Prachachat Party, whose political stronghold is in the violence-plagued southern border provinces, to take a clear stance on the proposed dissolution of Isoc.

At least, the chief government whip has made it clear that he supports the proposed dissolution of the command, said Mr Romadon.

He was referring to Adisorn Piengkes, a Pheu Thai Party list-MP who serves as chief government whip.

He pointed in a recent post on X to the need to get rid of Isoc, which, in his opinion, allows the military to interfere in other state organisations' work and the country's democracy.

Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana, list-MP and deputy leader of the United Thai Nation Party, said he was opposed to dissolving Isoc.

He said he believes it helps protect internal security and the country from various threats, including transnational crimes and natural disasters.

"If Isoc shuts down, all the other agencies connected to it will become disjointed and work separately, likely leading to the loss of workflow and coordination," he said.

Since the fate of the Isoc-dissolving bill lies with the government and the House, they are encouraged to carefully weigh up the bill's pros and cons before making a final decision on it.

Established in 1965, Isoc initially served as a command fighting against communism. In 1969, it was converted into a command overseeing the country's international security operations.

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