Conditions 'ripe' for mass protests

Conditions 'ripe' for mass protests

FFP leader told to 'exercise caution'

Adul Khiewboriboon
Adul Khiewboriboon

A support group for relatives of victims of the 1992 political unrest on Sunday expressed its concern about Thailand's deteriorating political and economic situation, which it said could erupt into violent street protests at any moment.

The chairman of the Committee of Relatives of the Black May 1992 Victims, Adul Khiewboriboon, said warning signs can already be seen and conditions are "almost ripe" for mass protests.

Mr Adul expressed the concern as anti-government activists met to organise an event they dub Run Against Dictatorship or Wing Lai Loong ("Run to oust the Uncle"), which is scheduled to take place on Jan 12 next year.

The activist also took the time to warn Future Forward Party leader, Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit, to exercise caution in his campaign against dictatorship.

"In the face of hardships, people affected by economic problems could jump in and make the situation worse," said Mr Adul.

Mr Thanathorn, who was recently stripped of his MP status by the Constitutional Court over a media-shareholding case, has spent recent weeks travelling across the country to meet voters from different areas.

The FFP leader has repeatedly said he will continue to devote his efforts to ensure the bills that the FFP have been pushing for -- including a draft law to annul the 27 orders issued by the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) and a bill to end mandatory military conscription -- are passed by the cabinet.

Mr Adul said the government should pay heed to calls for amendments to the 2017 coup-sponsored charter, which is widely seen as a tool for the NCPO to prolong its hold on power after the general election.

"The government shouldn't stall [the House's] attempts to amend the charter and scrutinise the use of Section 44 powers," he said.

"They need to revise the law and improve regulations to reflect the changing situation and start doing things the right way."

Mr Adul also criticised MPs, saying they have yet to act in the best interest of the people, with some publicly disrespecting the law and while others "simply don't know how to do their jobs".

In a related development, key figures from coalition parties are scheduled to meet for their first monthly meeting tomorrow, said a source.

The source said key coalition figures will come together at the meeting to discuss ways to prevent a repeat of their failure to defeat a motion to scrutinise the use of Section 44 powers by the NCPO.

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