After reporting that the “government on Friday forwarded a proposal to strip Thaksin Shinawatra of his police rank to … the King,” for “endorsement to complete the process,” the “process” has been changed.
The Dictator, General Prayuth Chan-ocha, approved the “recommendation that Thaksin, a police lieutenant colonel, lose his rank.” The self-appointed premier stated that “all Thaksin’s royal decorations could also be recalled after his police rank is withdrawn.”
As now reported at the Bangkok Post, Prayuth “has invoked Section 44 of the 2014 interim charter to strip Thaksin Shinawatra of his police rank, effective on Sunday.”
Why ignore the king? The Post explains:
A source said Gen Prayut apparently chose to invoke his power under Section 44 instead of seeking … the King’s endorsement as is the regular channel, possibly to protect the palace from a political backlash.
Maybe…. “But critics have said the use of Section 44 was probably to prevent future lawsuits as the power under this clause is absolute.”
Article 44 of the 2014 interim constitution was used because, this somewhat petty and highly personalized act that will be cheered by royalists, was considered to be about “national security and necessitates urgent action.”