Suriyasai says Thaksin may have violated Political Party Act

Suriyasai says Thaksin may have violated Political Party Act

Red-shirt United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship supporters hold a birthday party for ousted prime minister Thaksin Shinawtra at Imperial World shopping mall in Lat Phrao on July 26, 2016. (Photo by Patipat Janthong)
Red-shirt United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship supporters hold a birthday party for ousted prime minister Thaksin Shinawtra at Imperial World shopping mall in Lat Phrao on July 26, 2016. (Photo by Patipat Janthong)

Suriyasai Katasila, a former core member of the People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD), has called for the Election Commission (EC) to set a precedent for political parties to follow by ruling on whether former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra has violated the Political Party Act - something that could lead to the dissolution of the Pheu Thai Party.

In Sunday's edition of his weekly press release, Mr Suriyasai said he was of the opinion that former prime ministers Thaksin and Yingluck Shinawatra had recently increased their political activities -- the latest being Ms Yingluck's birthday party when Thaksin made a video call from abroad to his supporters in Thailand.

"In his video call, Thaksin showed he is still involved in the affairs of Pheu Thai, and has as much influence over them as before, even though he is no longer a member of the party," Mr Suriyasai said.

What Thaksin had done, he said, might have violated Sections 28-29 of the 2017 Political Party Act which prohibit a person who is not a member of a political party from interfering in the party's affairs, dominating the party or giving instructions for the party to follow. The violation might lead to the party being dissolved under Section 92 of the Political Party Act, he added, but did not elaborate.

Mr Suriyasai said he believed Sections 28-29 were intended to maintain the independence of political parties and prevent them from being manipulated or exploited by interest groups -- provisions not included in previous laws governing political parties.

He said that since the public had raised questions about whether Thaksin had violated the Political Party Act, the EC should look into the matter and make a ruling to set a precedent for all political parties to follow.


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