Thailand: Future Forward ready with alternative party if it were to be dissolved

BANGKOK (The Nation/ANN) - Piyabutr Saengkanokkul, the Future Forward Party (FFW) secretary-general denied the accusation that his party was trying to overthrow the Thai regime. He emphasised that the party only wished to remedy the situation in Thailand.

Future Forward Party (FFW) secretary-general Piyabutr Saengkanokkul on Saturday (January 18) denied the accusation that his party was trying to overthrow the Thai regime. Speaking at a seminar on “Future is Now” held at Thammasat University Rangsit Campus, he emphasised that the party only wished to remedy the situation in Thailand and the ones who are trying to target them with these kinds of accusations were those who had violated the constitution.

He said Future Forward will make all efforts to ensure any dissolution of the party becomes an exercise in futility by launching a new party. They have already requested around 60,000 members of Future Forward to register for the new party. Both Thanathorn and Piyabutr confirmed that they would not give up.

The Constitutional Court will deliver on January 21 at 2pm its verdict on the “Illuminati” case seeking dissolution of Future Forward Party. Illuminati is supposedly a secret anti-monarchy group.

At the seminar, Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit, head of Future Forward, presented a new economic model under civil state policies to fight injustice and “the failure of the Thai nation to build a better society”.

Normally, the government’s projects under civil state policies have led to more monopolies as big capitalists are the ones who shape the policies of Thailand. Dependence on foreign investment in the existing economic model in projects such as the Eastern Economic Corridor, high-speed trains and Thailand Riviera is likely to make Thailand grow without technology development, Thanathorn said.

“Moreover, the power that comes from the authorities not the voice of the people will cause a gap in society. Whether it is an economic gap or a social gap, the development of manpower and technology will meet obstacles that are caused by the economic model.

“We cannot rely on foreign capital which regards Thailand only as a production base,” Thanathorn said. “And the auto electronics industry that we depend on cannot grow any bigger. We need a new supply chain. We want to supply to a new industry.”

He explained that this change needed big government spending and in an industry created by Thais to add value and generate employment, which will balance the economy and raise a sense of responsibility for the next generation.

“Compared with the Bt3.3-trillion budgets, the government can manage with only Bt1.2 trillion. Therefore, we are presenting ‘zero-based budgeting’. The principle behind it is to reconstruct the previous budgets and focus on a certain number of budgets that will solve the country’s issues. The government should not spend only on projects in Bangkok but also distribute to other provinces,” Thanathorn said.

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