Tuesday, 2 December 2008

"The Court had no other option..."

This afternoon, the Constitutional Court announced its verdict in the vote-buying and fraud cases against three ruling coalition parties. All three parties (Chart Thai, Matchima Thipataya, and the PPP) were found guilty, and are thus automatically dissolved. Their executives, including PPP leader and Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat, are now banned from politics for the next five years. (Somchai, Thaksin Shinawatra's brother-in-law, was named Prime Minister following the disqualification of Samak Sundaravej earlier this year.)

The head of the nine judges defended their decision, saying: "The Court had no other option". The judgement marks the third guilty verdict against Thaksin's parties, after Samak's disqualification and the dissolution of TRT. Today's decision seems suspiciously like an attempt to placate the PAD, and it has already been described as a judicial coup.

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