A couple of days ago PPT noted that the junta’s “lesson” from the referendum will be that repression works in Thailand. It got them the desired result. We also suggested that the long-promised election will not be held until the junta is sure that it can get what it wants, again.
The Dictator has confirmed this. The “approved” anti-democratic constitution has yet to become law, but The Dictator’s “law” remains.
General Prayuth Chan-ocha took over all television stations for another of his speeches to the nation, beginning with conciliatory banter and then getting to the future of more military strong-arming.
He says it will be around three months before the constitution goes to the monarch for royal endorsement. Then preparations for an election will be held, “which should be by the end of 2017…”.
He then gets into the lies, saying that ” rights and freedoms are enjoyed by the people.” That;s a lie.
General Prayuth adds: “Even though there are those who distort the truth by saying that some rights have been curtailed, it is evident that unless you are breaking the laws or trying to create unruliness, you are free to express yourselves and criticize the government…”. That’s a lie.
He declares that “foreign countries have also expressed more confidence in Thailand now, with the country improving in many rankings acknowledged by the international community.” That’s a lie.
He says: “Our foreign relations are proceeding normally, and all foreign governments have expressed their support and commendation for Thailand.” That’s a lie.
On that topic, he says, “tourists and investors continue to pour in,” another fabrication.
The point of all of this is junta self-aggrandizement.
He then declares:
… I would like to inform all Thai citizens that we are not free from all our problems. Although all sectors (the government, the people, and the private sector) have cooperated under the Pracharat approach to create a sense of peacefulness, do away with our conflicts, solve our problems, and bring offenders into proper judicial processes, there are those who remain dissatisfied with this state of peacefulness, who persist on damaging the country and even our highest institution, all for their own personal gain, through the use of online media and information sent from abroad. Rest assured that the government shall continue to perform its duties to safeguard our national security and our peacefulness from being affected by these actions, and that our actions will be legal and based on the rule of law. At least the authority of the NCPO remains, as does the availability of Article 44, for the time being.
In other words, more of the same repression for months to come. Only the military junta can determine how many more months.