August 24, 2022
BANGKOK – He made this remark after the opposition filed a petition with the court on Monday, asking for a ruling on Prayut’s tenure.
The court is scheduled to hold its weekly meeting on Wednesday, but it is not known if the judges will take up this petition for consideration on the same day.
Anucha said the ruling will be in line with the law, because the law of the land applies to everybody, including the prime minister. He added that Prayut cannot interfere with the court’s ruling.
“Hence, we would like to ask people to have faith in the law, which is an important mechanism for coexistence in society and to help the country remain peaceful,” he said.
Anucha advised people to avoid participating in anti-government rallies across Bangkok as it may spark a new Covid-19 wave and will be a violation of the emergency decree.
He also asked motorists to avoid using routes where the protests are being held, such as the Lan Khon Mueang Town Square, Democracy Monument, Ratchaprasong intersection and Government House.
Critics are demanding that Prayut, who doubles as defence minister, step down before Wednesday when they say his eight-year term as stipulated in the Constitution expires.
Opposition MPs have submitted a petition for the Constitutional Court to rule on when Prayut’s eight-year tenure should expire.
Article 158 of the Constitution states that: “The prime minister shall not hold office for more than eight years in total, whether or not consecutively.”
However, the start date for Prayut’s eight-year tenure is widely disputed.
Many insist that Prayut’s term started when he first assumed premiership on August 24, 2014, after ousting Yingluck Shinawatra’s elected government in a military putsch led by him in May.
Others say his tenure began when the current Constitution was enforced on April 6, 2017, while a third group claims Prayut’s premiership actually began on June 9, 2019, when he was elected.