Nitirat on amnesty

1 11 2013

PPT thinks that Nitirat’s proposals on most legal matters are sensible and worthy of consideration. Its propositions on lese majeste are still important, if ignored because royalists are unable to relinquish one of their powerful political weapons and/or fear the reform of the law will bring down their world of privilege.

In the Bangkok Post, the group’s proposals that relate to amnesty – which have been around for a long time – are brought into the debate on the Puea Thai Party’s ill-considered bill.

Nitirat has has opposed Puea Thai’s amending of the amnesty bill tabled by Worachai Hema.

Worachet Pakeerut, a core leader of Nitirat points out that “his group had proposed the amnesty as a solution to the political stalemate, but the suggestion was not aimed at helping Thaksin [Shinawatra].”

Worachet said the current version of the bill “could be unconstitutional because it was not in line with the version approved by the House in the first reading in August.”

In a report at The Nation, Worachet also pointed out that the “bill also goes against the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) as it allows state officials and political manipulators off the hook…”.

He suggested that the government “could still save face by voting down the bill in the second reading…”.

If the government really wants to bring Thaksin home – as promised during the 2011 election campaign – Worachet said there were “[m]ore respectable ways” to do this than by this potentially “unconstitutional” and “blanket amnesty.”

As Nitirat has long pleaded, annulling the actions of the military coup junta and related administrations, would achieve this and would do it in a legally responsible manner.

Worachet “also asked why the amnesty bill does not cover those charged under the … lese majeste law, since such a condition contradicted the principle of people’s liberty.”

PPT hasn’t really bothered to say much about the dopey amnesty bill’s failure to include those charged and convicted and still jailed under this odious law. Quite simply, the bill is flawed so many ways that concentrating on lese majeste makes little sense.

In any case, on this bill, the only area where the government and opposition agree is on leaving out lese majeste cases. This bit of elite collusion is expected as each group shores up the declining monarchy and its declining prestige.

Piyabut Saengkanokkul, another Nitirat member, questioned the reasoning in extending the amnesty from January 2004, “covers many more incidents,” and this could “cause complications in identifying which cases were connected to the crackdown…”.

Worachet observed: “If the bill is passed into law, it would allow state agencies to crack down on all people’s movements without having to take any responsibility…”.

Listen to them.


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30 12 2013
Pandering to the minority? | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] is true, as far as it goes. There is no doubt that the ill-conceived amnesty bill was a disaster for all involved. It is true that the amnesty bill motivated many who have […]

30 12 2013
Pandering to the minority? | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] is true, as far as it goes. There is no doubt that the ill-conceived amnesty bill was a disaster for all involved. It is true that the amnesty bill motivated many who have […]