6 June 2024

Thailand’s opposition parties have threatened to ask the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) to investigate the conduct of the entire cabinet over its recent decision to delay enforcement of a law to prevent and suppress torture and enforced disappearances.

Somchai Srisutthiyakorn, strategy chief of the Thai Liberal Party, said today (Wednesday) that, if found guilty of misconduct, the NACC can seek the removal of the entire cabinet from the office.

Led by Opposition and Pheu Thai Party Leader Cholnan Srikaew, the parties announced today that they disagree with the cabinet’s decision to issue an executive decree to delay, until October 1st, the enforcement of Articles 22-25 of the relevant Act, which was due to become enforceable today, claiming that the agencies charged with enforcing the law are not ready and lack the necessary equipment.

Dr. Cholnan said that the delay in enforcement of the Act amounts to a violation of the public’s right to protection and is against the spirit of the law.

He also pointed out that the cabinet’s excuse, namely that the agencies concerned are not ready to enforce the law, is unjustified and does not meet the requirements for the promulgation of an executive decree, which include public disasters which may threaten national security, economic stability or public safety.

He said that the agencies concerned, the Royal Thai Police in particular, have been given 4 months to prepare before the enforcement of the Act, yet they are asking for more time.

The opposition leader demanded that the government submit the executive decree to parliament for consideration, noting that there is still time for both the Senate and the House to consider the decree in a joint session.

Failing that, he said opposition parties will ask the NACC to examine the conduct of the entire cabinet. They will also ask the Constitutional Court to rule whether the executive decree is justified.