11 July 2024

Thailand’s Election Commission (EC) has decided unanimously to ask the Constitutional Court to dissolve the opposition Move Forward party, after finding sufficient evidence to believe that the party has attempted to overthrow Constitutional Monarchy, in accordance with Political Parties Act.

The EC’s move follows the Constitutional Court’s January  31st unanimous ruling that the Move Forward party and its then leader, Pita Limjaroenrat, were guilty of exercising their rights and liberties to overthrow the Constitutional Monarchy, through their proposed amendment of Section 112 of the Criminal Code, or the lèse majesté law, and continuous campaigning for the amendment bill.

Commenting on the Election Commission’s decision, Move Forward spokesman Parit Wacharasindhu told the media today that the party and its legal team have been preparing for this moment.

He asked the media not to jump to the conclusion that the party will be dissolved, saying that their legal team will defend the party and prove its innocence.

The issue at stake, he said, is not just the fate of the party, but also to setting of a precedent for Thai politics in the future.

Parit said that several parties have been dissolved before and the Move Forward party does not want party dissolution to become the norm. A party should not be dissolved because of wrongdoings committed by its executives, who should face the legal repercussions.

Asked whether the Move Forward party has a plan B, the party-list MP said that they have plans to cope with all scenarios, including the worst case.

Parit said that the most worrisome aspects of the prospect of a party’s dissolution are the ramifications on Thai politics as a whole.

“It appears that we are creating a political value or culture in which dissolving a party is normal.  Instead, we should create an environment in which all parties can develop to become political institutions, which do not attach importance to individuals, but serve as a gathering point for people who share similar thoughts,” said Parit.