Kannavee Suebsang, the FAIR Party's secretary-general and only MP, on Wednesday said he was unfazed by what he described as an attempt to have his party dissolved in what he sees is part of a plot to derail the formation of the coalition government.
The party is part of the prospective eight-party coalition led by the Move Forward Party (MFP). FAIR recently found itself in hot water after a senior party figure, Hakim Pongtigor, spoke at a recent seminar on the right to self-determination and the advocation of a separate 'Patani' state from Thailand.
Mr Hakim has since been removed as the party's deputy secretary-general and Yamaruddin Songsiri as party deputy spokesman over the seminar, criticised as supporting separatism, which amounts to a violation of the constitution.
During the June 7 seminar at the Prince of Songkla University's Pattani campus, members of Pelajar Bangsa, or the "national student movement", which represents students from the three southernmost provinces, stirred controversy when they simulated a referendum on the deep South separating from the rest of the country.
Following the seminar, political activist Srisuwan Janya last Friday petitioned the Election Commission (EC) to investigate whether the FAIR, MFP and Prachachart Party were involved in the alleged separatist push, considering their roles in the seminar.
Under Section 22 of the organic law on political parties, a party executive who is proven to have failed to control a party member and ensured that person does not violate the constitution and the law may face dismissal as ordered by the EC, he said.
Under Section 92 of the law, the EC has the authority to also seek to have a party dissolved if it is proven to have acted as an "opponent" of the democratic system with the King as head of state, he said.
Speaking after picking up an EC document certifying him as an MP, Mr Kannavee on Wednesday insisted the Patani separation issue was nothing more than a misunderstanding, since cleared up.
He said he hopes most senators would still support the MFP-led alliance in the coming vote to select the new prime minister as they now appear to understand that FAIR was simply aiming to ensure "freedom of expression" for people living in the far South.
He said the expression of their opinions on Patani was constitutional and the simulated referendum was conducted for the sake of academia.