Bangkok Post editor Umesh Pandey gives some credit to the judiciary – the Central Administrative Court – for having ruled that “the military junta’s moves to take away the three passports held by the former Education Minister, Chaturon Chaisang, was a ‘serious violation’ of …[Chaturon’s] fundamental rights…”.
But he goes way, way too far when he states that the “judiciary is making great strides in bringing about fairness in society…”.
Thailand’s judiciary and its legal processes are somewhere between a joke and feudal. PPT has spent a considerable amount of space highlighting repeated failures and while we don’t expect Pandey to be a regular reader, surely he reads his own newspaper.
On the same day when he is full of praise for the judiciary and its “strides in bringing about fairness,” his colleague Alan Dawson lambasts elements of the judicial system and its double standards.
You might say that the judges are not the whole system, and that’s true, with Pandey slamming elements of it. However, there are now hundreds of cases that have gone to court in recent years that have seen judges fail all reasonable tests of fairness. Think of the scores of lese majeste cases, several cases we mentioned in a previous post, cases against Abhisit Vejjajiva and Suthep Thaugsuban, cases making coups legitimate, a judicial coup, cases against red shirts (and not against yellow shirts), allowing torturers to go free and many, many more.
Being honest, we think the judicial system is now broken beyond repair. We have royalists, the military, the palace and the judges themselves to blame for this sad state of affairs.
Update: A reader puts us onto another Bangkok Post story, where the headline is, NCPO urges Thaksin to stop ‘distorting the truth’. The junta says:
“Mr Thaksin [Shinawatra] should stop harming the country, show restraint and stop distorting information. If Mr Thaksin calls for justice from society, Mr Thaksin should give justice to society, too,” the NCPO spokesman said.
The junta demands that Thaksin stop harming Thailand. Yet it is the junta that distorts truth. It has done so for years now. And, if the junta demands the legal system for Thaksin, how about themselves? Why is it that Section 113 of the Criminal Code doesn’t apply to this bunch of thugs?
Section 113: Whoever, commits an act of violence or threatens to commit an act of violence in order to:
- Overthrow or change the Constitution;
- Overthrow the legislative power, the executive power or the judicial power of the Constitution, or nullify such power; or
- Separate the Kingdom or seize the power of administration in any part of the Kingdom, is said to commit insurrection, and shall be punished with death or imprisonment for life.