Corruption park back in the news

17 12 2018

Rajabhakti Park or Corruption Park, the military’s giant and expensive posterior polish for “great kings” was in the news before the funeral of the last king.

One of the last times that the park was in the news was when the Bangkok Post reminded the military junta and its readers that the “funeral occurred in the midst of political questions which now will return to the fore.” At that time, the Post said that several of these “questions” are “urgent.” It listed these:

These include the running scandal of Rajabhakti Park‘s improvement plan. The Prachuap Khiri Khan site of the massive statues of the seven great kings has been under a cloud from its inception. The latest controversy is a two-part “improvement”. These consist of what seem to be the most expensive 52 toilets ever installed at a government-supported facility, and five shops. These will cost yet another 16 million baht in “donations” — a word which has become synonymous with “scandal”. In countering the allegations about massive overspending, army chief Chalermchai Sitthisad said the military is ready to disclose full financial details about the project which was investigated once by the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC). He should realise the public anticipates getting the details.

We don’t recall the puppet NACC doing anything at all to seriously investigate anything at all related to the junta. The  NACC is as reliable as the Election Commission in maintaining its uncritical support of the military dictatorship.

It took a while and, as usual, required a few brave anti-junta activists to resurrect it, but as Khaosod reports,

Sirawith “Ja New” Seritiwat of the New Democracy Movement and 13 other anti-junta activists have been “intercepted Sunday while traveling to the army’s historical park in Prachuap Khiri Khan, which was engulfed in corruption scandals.”

They were twice blocked by official junta thugs – police and soldiers – on their way from Bangkok to the Rajabhakti Park.

Local police and soldiers openly admitted that the junta had ordered them to harass and prevent “a political movement … [from] heading to the park…”.

The report notes that the park “features gigantic statues of seven former Thai kings” and that its construction had “irregularities in its funding – including unusually expensive materials and shady commissions.”

The last time the activists wanted to get to the park was in 2015, when they were also prevented from reaching it.

Nothing changes much when it comes to the corrupt military junta, even when it has “lifted” political restrictions. That was a pretend “lifting.”


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