23 May 2024

Core members of the disbanded Thai Raksa Chart party vowed today to carry on with what they claim to be a fight for democracy and to launch campaign rallies across the country against the National Council for Peace and Order.

The group, which includes former TRC’s electoral strategy chief Chaturun Chaisaeng, former campaign manager Natthawut Saikua, Weng Tochirakarn and Korkaew Pikulthong, announced the setting up of a group called “Next Step for Democracy” to mount campaign rallies to resist the junta’s bid to retain power.

Chaturon said he felt sorry about the dissolution of his party by the Constitutional Court, resulting in the disqualification of all its candidates and the banishment from politics for 10 years of the 13 executive committee members.

Instead of sitting idly by, he said the group would continue their struggle for democracy and would make use of the last two weeks before the election to do their best to urge the party’s supporters to vote for pro-democracy parties.

Natthawut Saikua, meanwhile, said the group would immediately launch campaign rallies to urge voters to support parties aligned with the pro-democracy camp adding “We will not ask the people to cast ‘vote no’ ballots” in reference to a suggestioni by some party supporters that voters should do so in an act of defiance against the party’s dissolution.

‘Vote no’ means a voter declines to vote for any candidate or party on the ballot, but is still regarded as valid.