By Thai Newsroom Reporters
FORMER PALANG PRACHARATH Party leader Uttama Savanayon might probably be given a jail term and banned from politics for several years for having evidently allowed a partisan candidate to run for MP two and a half years ago despite disqualification, said a university academic today (Dec. 23).
Mr. Somchai Srisutthiyakorn, director of Rangsit University’s Centre for Political Research & Development, remarked that Uttama, former finance minister and former leader of the ruling party, might finally be found guilty of breaching the constitution’s organic law on political parties by approving, albeit inadvertently, the electoral candidacy of ex-Palang Pracharath MP Sira Jenjaka whom the Constitutional Court has deprived of his MP status due to a criminal conviction on money fraud handed down to him in 1995.
Uttama might probably be found guilty of failing to stop the deposed lawmaker who was evidently disqualified in the first place due to such a court conviction from running for MP, commented Somchai, a former election commissioner.
Sira had allegedly made false statements to conceal the court verdict earlier delivered against him when he applied to run for MP in the 2019 election whereas the former party leader had eventually failed to find out and he was subsequently disqualified, the academic said.
Given such a failure on his part, Uttama might finally be given a maximum of five years in prison or a maximum of 100,000 baht in fine or both, plus a maximum of a five-year ban from politics whereas Sira might be given a maximum of 10 years in jail and a maximum of a 20-year ban from politics for having violated the constitution’s organic law on elections by running for MP despite disqualification.
The former party leader has been recently speculated to join the bandwagon of Si Kumarn (literally translating as ”four infants”) Group to set up a brand-new party of their own and contest the next general election.
Other members of the group earlier attached to Palang Pracharath Party include former party secretary-general/ former energy minister Sontirat Sontijirawong, former higher education, science, research and innovation minister Suvit Mesincee and former deputy secretary-general to the Prime Minister Kobsak Pootrakul.
Top: Former Palang Pracharath Party leader Uttama Savanayon.
Home Page: Mr. Somchai Srisutthiyakorn, director of Rangsit University’s Centre for Political Research & Development. Photos: Matichon