PM cannot attend cabinet or summit due to legal technicality – Piyabutr

Future Forward party secretary-general Piyabutr Saengkanokkul has accused Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha of violating the Constitution by chairing cabinet meetings last week and yesterday (June 18th).

In his Facebook post yesterday he said that General Prayut was appointed the post-election prime minister by a Royal Command dated June 9th, in accordance with Article 158 of the Constitution.

He explained that General Prayut, for the time being, is serving in two capacities, namely the post-election prime minister and head of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), adding that the second capacity as NCPO chief will expire once the new cabinet is officially set up, in accordance with Article 265 of the Constitution.

Following his appointment as the post-election prime minister, he said General Prayut’s capacity as the prime minister of the junta-appointed cabinet, which is still in place, ended.

General Prayut cannot be the post-election prime minister and junta-appointed prime minister at the same time, said Piyabutr, adding that he can only chair cabinet meetings when his post-election cabinet formally takes over, after there is a Royal command endorsing the new cabinet and all cabinet ministers have been sworn in.

Technically, he doubted Prime Minister Prayut could attend the 34th ASEAN Summit in Bangkok during June 22-23 either because, though legally a prime minister, he cannot perform his duties because he has not yet been sworn in.

The Future Forward secretary-general warned that all the orders and documents signed by General Prayut in his capacity as post-election prime minister may be null and void.

He blamed the framers of this Constitution for failing to anticipate this political mess associated with General Prayut.

The government’s top legal expert, Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam, is yet to respond to Piyabutr’s comment.


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