Rewarding royalists

3 02 2013

PPT spends quite a lot of time reading stuff about the monarchy from the syrupy and posterior polishing dross that come out daily to the most radical republican material. In this context, it was a bit of a shock when we came across something completely new to us. Or maybe we’ve just not read carefully enough, and readers can tell us.

At something called the Moodie Report, there is a report that made PPT think it was 1922:

His Majesty King Bhumibol of Thailand has bestowed the family name ‘Srivaddhanaprabha’ on Vichai Raksriaksorn (former surname), Group Chairman of King Power Group of Companies in Thailand and owner of UK’s Leicester City Football Club. The auspicious family name granted by His Majesty was published in the Royal Thai Government Gazette.

The report goes on to explain that:

Vichai is next to the tall lad in red (!!)

Vichai is next to the tall lad in red (!!)

In Thailand, royally granted family names have been bestowed particularly on the Monarch’s retainers since the reign of King Vajiravudh (Rama VI, who ruled from 1910 – 1925). It is a tradition of His Majesty to grant surnames to members of the royal family, government officers, and private citizens who have contributed significantly to the good of the country.

PPT knew that when family names were introduced in the 1920s that the king did hand some out to flunkies and retainers. What we didn’t know was that this has been revived.

It is rather fitting that this announcement involves one of the business families that has been more slithery than most in seeking royal recognition. Vichai, one of Thailand’s richest, is thus ecstatic to receive this recognition after 24 years building, appropriately enough, King Power:

“It is our family’s greatest honour to receive this royally granted surname…. The name ‘Srivaddhanaprabha’ conveys positive attributes to the industry and brings prosperity to our family. We have now officially changed our surname since it was published in the Royal Gazette in late 2012….

Royal recognition is usually a reward. We wonder if the reward is political, for in addition to all the polo nonsense for royals and their hangers-on, Vichai has been a political supporter of Newin Chidchob who was so critical to the Abhisit Vejjajiva regime and in opposing red shirts while holding the royal banner high.

Perhaps more significantly, Vichai is credited with having “plagiarized” the (now disgraced) Lance Armstrong and his plastic bracelets in Thailand and made them “Long live the king” bracelets and raised a fortune that he handed over to the palace.

For the Chinese business class in the 1920s, getting a royal family name was a sign of inclusion and acceptance. Today, it must be a fitting reward for a wealthy supporter of the wealthiest.


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7 responses

6 07 2013
Rich, rich, rich II | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] might recall that PPT posted on this name change earlier this year. Back then we commented that royal recognition is a reward, and we wondered if […]

6 07 2013
Rich, rich, rich II | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] might recall that PPT posted on this name change earlier this year. Back then we commented that royal recognition is a reward, and we wondered if […]

19 09 2018
King Power monopoly assured | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] The fabulously wealthy clan with a royally-bestowed family name that own King Power is available here, here and here. […]

19 09 2018
King Power monopoly assured | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] The fabulously wealthy clan with a royally-bestowed family name that own King Power is available here, here and here. […]

28 10 2018
King Power helicopter down | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] Rewarding royalists considers the fruits of royal posterior polishing. […]

28 10 2018
King Power helicopter down | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] Rewarding royalists considers the fruits of royal posterior polishing. […]

28 10 2018
King Power helicopter down I | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] Rewarding royalists considers the fruits of royal posterior polishing. […]




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