The Election Commission has recently made the decision to dismiss multiple petitions that urged the examination of the Pheu Thai Party’s campaign promise of providing a 10,000-baht digital handout to all citizens aged 16 and above. These petitions inquired if this bold promise was in violation of Section 73 of the Member of Parliament election laws. Srisuwan Janya, secretary-general of the Association for the Protection of the Constitution, Ruangkrai Leekitwattana, a former election nominee of the Palang Pracharath Party, and Sonthiya Sawasdee, a former consultant to the House committee on law, justice, and human rights, were the individuals who initiated these petitions.
Section 73 of the law clearly forbids election contenders or anyone acting on their behalf from promising voters any form of assets, money, or other advantages. Moreover, it bans them from providing misleading information about their policies. This section also states that a political party may be dissolved if the offense in question is deemed severe enough.
Ever since it was initially announced, the Pheu Thai Party’s flagship policy has garnered a significant amount of criticism. Many individuals have raised concerns over the actual feasibility of this proposed policy. In response to these criticisms, the Election Commission requested Pheu Thai deliver an explanation detailing the funding sources for the policy, as well as the potential risks that have been addressed and taken into account, as required by the law.
After a thorough meeting on the matter, the Election Commission resolved to decline the petitions on the basis that the party had offered sufficient information during its campaign regarding the costing and implementation plan for the policy. The details provided were enough to satisfy the criteria required if the party were to assume power and implement the policy in government.
This decision by the Election Commission has put to rest the numerous inquiries regarding the legitimacy of the Pheu Thai Party’s campaign promise to distribute a 10,000-baht digital handout to all eligible citizens. The party has successfully provided enough information to demonstrate the validity of their proposed policy, assuaging concerns about potential violations of Section 73 of the Member of Parliament election laws.