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Move Forward Party Challenges Dissolution: Defends Position in Battle Over Lese Majeste Law

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The Move Forward Party (MFP) convened a press conference at parliament following a momentous Constitutional Court ruling on January 31, which insinuated that the party’s intentions could destabilize the constitutional monarchy. This event was captured in an evocative photo by Nutthawat Wichieanbut.

On Tuesday, the MFP formally submitted its comprehensive written defence to the Constitutional Court, battling the dissolution case instigated by the Election Commission (EC), according to a trusted insider. The EC had sought the party’s dissolution in light of the aforementioned court ruling, asserting that the MFP’s advocacy for revising Section 112 of the Criminal Code, popularly known as the lese majeste law, suggested a threat to the constitutional monarchy. The January court decision essentially laid the groundwork for the party’s dissolution.

The court officially accepted the EC’s petition to dissolve the party on April 3. The MFP’s detailed defence was submitted just in the nick of time, marking the final day the court allowed for submission. Initially, the MFP had been granted three deadline extensions at their request before ultimately submitting their defence.

The insider also revealed that a thorough proofreading session took place on Monday night, ensuring the defence was meticulously checked before the party’s legal team presented it to the court on Tuesday.

Central to the written defence is the assertion that the MFP never intended to destabilize the democratic regime, helmed by the King as head of state. The document contends that the party’s actions, which the January 31 ruling had interpreted as antagonistic to the constitutional monarchy, were not conclusive or complete, the source elaborated.

Parit Wacharasindhu, MFP spokesman and a party-list Member of Parliament, announced that the MFP plans to hold a press conference on Sunday to divulge more intricate details about their submission. During this conference, the party is also set to expound upon the legal foundation underpinning their defence strategy.

When questioned about the decision to hold the press conference on Sunday, coinciding with district-level voting in the Senate election, Wacharasindhu explained that it was simply the most convenient time for the party to address the public.


  1. Samantha June 4, 2024

    I think the Move Forward Party is just using the lese majeste law as an excuse to push their own agenda. They know exactly what they are doing.

    • Tom H June 4, 2024

      That’s a bit cynical, don’t you think? They have a right to challenge laws they find unjust.

      • Samantha June 4, 2024

        Not when it risks destabilizing the monarchy. Some things are worth preserving.

      • M. Bradley June 4, 2024

        But isn’t it possible to have a constitutional monarchy that allows for more freedom of speech, including critique of the monarchy?

  2. historian43 June 4, 2024

    This isn’t the first time a political party has been accused of threatening the monarchy. History has repeated itself too often in Thailand.

    • Jack June 4, 2024

      Exactly, and sometimes the monarchy itself has played a role in those accusations.

  3. Joe June 4, 2024

    If the MFP can’t stick to deadlines without needing extensions, how can they expect to run a country?

    • Natalie S. June 4, 2024

      That’s an unfair critique. Legal defenses are complicated and they took the time to make sure it was thorough.

    • GrowerXV June 4, 2024

      They knew dissolution was a possibility all along, so why the delays? Seems fishy to me.

    • Joe June 4, 2024

      I just think it’s bad optics. Punctuality matters in politics.

  4. Larry D. June 4, 2024

    Whether or not you agree with the MFP, there’s no denying that revising Section 112 is a significant issue. It’s about balancing free speech with respect for the monarchy.

  5. Helen P. June 4, 2024

    I commend the MFP for their bravery. Speaking out against powerful institutions is never easy.

    • Saman June 4, 2024

      Bravery or recklessness? There’s a thin line between the two.

  6. AcademicAnon June 4, 2024

    The lese majeste law is a relic of the past. Modern politics needs to evolve beyond such draconian measures.

    • Sophie W. June 4, 2024

      Agree 100%. It’s about time Thailand joined the modern era in terms of free speech.

    • OldSoul June 4, 2024

      Some traditions are worth keeping. It’s a unique part of Thai culture.

  7. Elaine June 4, 2024

    Why did the MFP wait until the last day to submit their defense? Sounds like a strategy to maximize publicity.

    • Michael June 4, 2024

      Or perhaps they were just being thorough. Legal proceedings like this require precision.

    • Engineer29 June 5, 2024

      Maximizing publicity isn’t a bad idea, it keeps the public informed.

  8. David K. June 4, 2024

    Holding the press conference on an election day is smart. They get maximum attention in the media.

  9. Jill June 4, 2024

    Doesn’t this just feed into the narrative that the MFP is more focused on media stunts than real governance?

  10. Patricia A. June 5, 2024

    The Constitutional Court ruling seemed pretty biased to me. It didn’t consider the full context of the MFP’s intentions.

  11. Lan June 5, 2024

    I think the MFP is playing a dangerous game. They should be more careful with their rhetoric.

    • Bryan June 5, 2024

      Sometimes you have to take risks for real change. Playing it safe won’t solve anything.

    • David K. June 5, 2024

      The MFP is doing what they believe is right. Change often comes with risks.

  12. Scholar89 June 5, 2024

    A constitutional monarchy should be able to coexist with free speech. Look at other democratic nations with similar systems.

  13. Timothy June 5, 2024

    How can we say the MFP isn’t a threat when they are clearly shaking the foundations of the monarchy?

    • Janelle June 5, 2024

      Shaking the foundations doesn’t mean destroying them. It can also mean strengthening them by making necessary reforms.

    • Scholar89 June 5, 2024

      Constructive criticism can lead to a more resilient and respected institution.

  14. Watcher33 June 5, 2024

    This situation highlights the importance of judicial impartiality. The court shouldn’t appear to be taking sides.

  15. Felicity B. June 5, 2024

    It’s not just about the lese majeste law. The MFP’s whole platform is about reforming outdated systems.

  16. Duncan June 5, 2024

    I think the MFP’s defense, if valid, will show that they aren’t the villains the EC makes them out to be.

  17. Kat June 5, 2024

    Thailand needs parties like the MFP to challenge the status quo and push for progress.

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