November 6, 2023
BANGKOK – Chaithawat Tulathon, the party’s leader, said on Sunday that Bangkok MP Chaiyamparwaan Manpianjit had failed to comply with the party’s resolution for him issue public apologies to his three alleged victims and offer remedial measures.
Chaithawat said Chaiyamparwaan had clearly violated the resolution, so party executives and MPs will need to deliberate on whether this was a severe disciplinary offence warranting expulsion.
He added that Move Forward will hold a three-day seminar with MPs in a province from Monday to discuss appropriate action against Chaiyamparwaan. He did not specify which province this seminar is to be held.
He said he would also raise this issue with party executives during an online meeting with them later on Sunday.
Move Forward held a closed-door meeting of executives and MPs in Parliament last Wednesday to consider allegations of sexual misconduct against Chaiyamparwaan and Prachinburi MP Wuttiphong Thonglour.
A party fact-finding panel concluded that there were enough grounds to believe the two MPs had committed sexual misconduct as accused by their alleged victims. The panel recommended that they both be expelled.
Chaiyamparwaan, however, was spared because fewer than three-fourths of MPs and executives present voted for his expulsion. Attending the meeting were 128 executives and MPs, of whom 106 voted against Chaiyamparwaan, fewer than the required 116 votes.
Wuttiphong, meanwhile, was expelled with 120 votes.
Chaiyamparwaan’s escape led to an uproar among several female MPs and social networkers.
On Friday, when Chaiyamparwaan was supposed to admit his guilt publicly and apologise to his unnamed victims, he insisted that he had done nothing wrong. He claimed the three women had consensually been intimate with him. However, he did bow three times, while insisting he was innocent.
This response infuriated several women MPs and social networkers, who said Chaiyamparwaan had continued the sexual harassment by being explicit about his relations with the women.
“I saw that what was announced by Chaiyamparwaan was tantamount to him not admitting his guilt. But I must be careful in expressing comments publicly, as I may be violating the law,” Chaithawat said.
He admitted that Chaiyamparwaan’s case severely affected the party’s reputation, and that Move Forward will have to explain the issue to the public once the case has been settled.