The former steward of Thailand’s police force, Sereepisuth Temeeyaves, stirred the political milieu recently when he lodged a formal complaint with the National Anti-Corruption Commission, or NACC. At the crux of his grievance stands Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin and the Police Commission, who, according to Temeeyaves, have egregiously violated the law in their recent appointment of Pol Gen Torsak Sukvimol as the fresh face of the national police force.
Not just any former chief, but a leader of the Seri Ruam Thai Party, Sereepisuth Temeeyaves was seen entering the NACC offices last Thursday, lawyer Ananchai Chaidet in tow. Rendering his presence even more pronounced in the political scene, Temeeyaves is a pivotal figure among the eleven parties merged in the Pheu Thai-led coalition government. This bold move came in the wake of Ananchai’s tantalizing forecast of an upcoming “super big surprise” slated for October 5th.
The complaint lodged by Sereepisuth train its sights on Srettha, who concurrently chairs the Police Commission. With ten additional members in the judicial line of fire, the petition asserts that the appointment of Pol Gen Torsak Sukvimol deviated wildly from the rule of seniority enshrined in the Police Act.
The allocation of the lofty position to Torsak in the September 27th selection process was indeed controversial. Among the quartet of contenders, Torsak had the least seniority. The other three, Pol Gen Roy Ingkapairote, Pol Gen Surachate Hakparn, and Pol Gen Kitrat Phanphet, had accrued a substantial amount of experience, with Roy superannuating the list. However, Torsak’s quick ascent is attributed to his late entry into the police force at the age of 33 after toying with other career options.
While Srettha did not cast a vote, the spotlight of responsibility shines resolutely on him, as he was the primary advocate for Torsak, according to the petition. His role in the appointment cannot be discounted, irrespective of his decision to refrain from voting.
Meanwhile, Ananchai, garnered public attention as the representative defending Pol Gen Surachate and eight other suspended police officers implicated in an illegal gambling operation. An unnamed governmental authority allegedly urged Ananchai and Surachate to drop the pending case.
Amid internal politics and post-appointment tensions, Surachate ultimately withdrew from the situation, offering his congratulations to Torsak the following day. Lawyer Ananchai remained unwavering in his pursuit to lay bare the truth of the matter.
Ananchai readily acknowledged that he was never officially appointed as Surachate’s counsel. While he continues to enjoy a cordial relationship with the deputy police chief, he clarified his ongoing commitment to the eight other officers implicated in the case, counteracting rumors of receiving a steep payment from Surachate or any of the other officers involved.