Opposition wants special House panel to monitor spending of huge loan

Thailand’s Opposition parties will propose that the House of Representatives set up an extraordinary House committee to monitor the Government’s spending of a 1.9 trillion baht loan, which is part of three executive decrees intended to cushion COVID-19 impacts on the economy, businesses and the people.

Pheu Thai MP Suthin Klangsaeng said today (Friday) that, since the Government has not given any details about how this huge amount of money will be spent, the Opposition finds it necessary to make sure that the money is be used properly, in a transparent manner and meets the need of those affected by the pandemic.

He explained that, through the special House panel, external experts in various fields could be invited to join, effectively monitor the spending of the money and make recommendations.

Mr. Suthin said that he hopes the proposal will be treated by the House as an urgent matter and that government parties support their initiative, adding that the Opposition will propose amendments to the loan decree to enable an effective set of checks and balances on the spending.

The most significant executive decree of the three will authorize the Finance Ministry to secure a one trillion baht loan from external and internal sources, to cushion impacts on the national economy, help millions of people affected by the closure of businesses, help medical workers and enhance the health system.

Opposition parties claim that the Government, during the debate, has so far failed to explain clearly how the loan will be spent or how it will be repaid.

“Securing a loan is not the problem. The real problem is how the loan will be repaid in the long run,” said Pheu Thai MP Chirayu Huangsap.

He also criticized the Bank of Thailand’s governor Veerathai Santipraphob for using social media to explain the loan decree, noting that it is a big issue of great public interest and it should be explained formally.


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