January 9, 2024
BANGKOK – Senate members are gathering signatures for a motion to grill the government on issues including the controversial digital wallet scheme and alleged privileged treatment of former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra.
Senator Direkrit Jenkrongtham said several members of the upper house have backed Senator Seree Suwanpanont’s motion to invoke Article 153 for a special Senate debate against the government.
Article 153 states that support from one-third of the Senate is needed to submit a motion for a general debate to grill ministers on state affairs.
Direkrit said he is confident that the motion will be signed by more than the required 84 senators.
He said senators wanted the government to answer several questions, including whether the digital wallet scheme would break the law and whether there existed an economic crisis to warrant the 500 billion baht borrowing needed to fund the scheme.
The senators also want answers on nepotism and an alleged lack of transparency in the judicial system after convicted former PM Thaksin failed to spend even a single night in jail following his return to Thailand on August 22.
He said the Senate would also want to ask the government about the planned public referendum on the plan to rewrite a new charter.
Direkrit said the general debate would be a good opportunity for the government to clear public doubts on these issues.