Political parties in Bangkok have transformed Phahon Yothin Road into a vibrant display of campaign posters, as Thailand gears up for the forthcoming elections. Amidst this atmosphere, the Election Commission (EC) has announced an innovative initiative to tackle electoral corruption, by inviting citizens to report instances of vote buying or fraud through its “Ta Sapparot” (pineapple eyes) mobile app. This user-friendly platform, which is available on Android and iOS devices, enables users to anonymously submit information on elections-related malpractice.
In addition to the app, the EC has provided alternative channels for the public to submit any complaints about potential wrongdoing. People have the option to make a phone call to the dedicated hotline numbers, 02-141-8860, 02-141-8579, or 02-141-8858. For an even faster response, they can call the EC’s own 1444 hotline number.
The EC is offering enticing cash rewards to whistleblowers, starting at 100,000 baht and reaching up to a staggering 1 million baht, depending on the significance of the evidence leading to a conviction.
In a related development, EC secretary-general Sawaeng Boonmee diligently supervised the dispatch of ballots and equipment to 66 foreign countries for advance voting in 94 cities. Narong Boonsatheanwong, the deputy director-general of the Consular Affairs Department, and Pongsathorn Wisetsuwan, the deputy managing director of Thailand Post, joined Mr. Sawaeng in monitoring the crucial transfer at Thailand Post’s headquarters in Bangkok.
For these advance votes, the party-list ballots have been adorned in green, while the constituency ballots boast a distinct purple hue. According to the latest registration statistics, 115,139 Thais have signed up for advance voting overseas between March 25 and April 9. A majority of them, 109,442 to be precise, registered online, while the remaining individuals opted for district or local registration offices.
On a financial note, the EC disclosed the total donations received by each party in January. The United Thai Nation Party emerged as the leading beneficiary, with a windfall of 26 million baht, followed by the Pheu Thai Party’s 12 million baht and the Chartthaipattana Party’s 9.8 million baht. Other parties, including the Bhumjaithai Party, the Chartpattanakla Party, and the Move Forward Party, also received substantial donations towards their respective campaigns.