"In societies where Robbing Hoods are treated like a celebrity it is but natural to expect political parties to act like a Mafia syndicate" Political Jaywalker "In a nation where corruption is endemic people tend to confuse due process with aiding and abetting criminals" Political Jaywalker "War doesn't determine who is right, war determines who is left" Bertrand Russell "You have just one flash flood of money, you keep your people poor. It's like a time bomb and it's scary" Philippine Lawmaker

Samak Sundaravej Can’t Cook while in Office!

No, there is no truth to the rumor that Samak Sundaravej was thrown out as Thailand Prime Minister for his unpalatable cooking of his signature dishes like salmon coconut soup and pork leg marinated in Coca-Cola. It was a culmination of protest that has been roiling Bangkok for weeks with demonstrators occupying the government house. He was perceived by the protestors as a puppet for exiled former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, and fears of using his position to help Thaksin fight corruption charges that forced him out of office. According to Asian Tribune he was sacked by the Constitutional Court in a unanimous ruling for violating a specific article of the constitution below:
Article 267 stipulates that a prime minister is prohibited from holding any position in a partnership, firm or an organization carrying out business with the intention to share profits or income, or being an employee.
It appears to be a victory for the People’s Alliance for democracy but the Constitutional Court ruling does not prevent Samak Sundaravej from seeking the prime ministerial post again. This is exacerbated by his ruling People Power Party that is not shy on their plans to re-nominate him. Under this scenario Lybunlin’s reading of the developments should be taken seriously, to quote:
Residents of Bangkok said that they feared a backlash by supporters of the Prime Minister in the coming days.

It remains unclear how long the Prime Minister’s period out of office will be: members of his party suggested that it could be only a couple of days. His Cabinet was told that it would be allowed to stay on in the interim until a new administration was installed. That could be led by Mr Samak again if he is re-elected by Parliament, as the law seems to allow.
Make no mistake about it Sundaravej’s saga is not just about his cooking, according to BBC News during his four years stint as Bangkok governor, there were allegations on city contract corruption that is still under investigation. He does not hide his ties with deposed Prime Minister Thaksin and his cabinets are largely made up of members of Thaksin’s old party Thai Rak Thai, and their friends and relatives. Chang Noi has a very interesting article that dates back to 2000 on Sundaravej, to quote:
Every few months, the events of 1973 or 1976 flash back into the news. Now it is Ji Ungphakorn’s call for Samak Sundaravej to admit his role in the 1976 massacre. A few months ago, it was the controversy over a school textbook covering the events of 1973. Further back, Chuan was challenged for approving a decoration for Thanom Kittikhachon, the last of the dictator-generals. Before that, the issue over a monument to the democracy martyrs. And back to 1996, the emotional commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the 1976 events.
This development is a healthy sign that the region is moving forward towards democracy while there is a long road ahead they are moving in that direction. Bloggers in the East Asia region are getting involved at Global Voices where they just concluded a virtual meeting on the corruption scandal in Taiwan. In that regard Mong of Mongster Nest would like to invite those who want to get involve to discuss in a virtual meeting of bloggers in the East Asia region the political crisis in Thailand on September 12, Friday at 10PM – 12 MN. For more particulars please email Mong on how to get to the chat room.
Update: 9/11/08

The ruling of the constitutional court of Thailand just made a political circus out of the political impasse’ with the re-nomination of prime minister Samak Sudaravej back into his office courtesy of the largest political party he belongs, the People Power Party.

The crook errr cook gladly accepted the nomination in a ruling that serve no purpose other than give Samak Sudaravej a good excuse to reshuffle his cabinet while the people are the one’s cooked this time around in process that is more of a cruel joke.

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