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Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin’s Fate Hinges on Court Ruling Over Controversial Appointment

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Tension fills the air as Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin gears up for his inaugural national televised programme. The pre-recorded show, Talking to Srettha, made its much-anticipated debut on Saturday, with viewers eagerly tuning in. (Photo: @Thavisin X account)

The big question on everyone’s mind: Will Srettha remain in the prime ministerial post, or will tumultuous changes sweep through the top tiers of government? The anxiety stems from an impending court ruling on Srettha’s ethical conduct, specifically concerning his controversial appointment of Pichit Chuenban, a lawyer with strong ties to Thaksin Shinawatra, to his cabinet.

A survey conducted by the National Institution of Development and Administration (NIDA) released on Sunday reveals a nation divided. Out of 1,310 respondents from across all regions, 28% assert that they see no impending change in leadership, while another 28% hold a tentative belief in the continuation of Srettha’s tenure.

The NIDA poll, which took place last Wednesday and Thursday, cast a spotlight on burgeoning uncertainties surrounding the current government. Facing the heat, Srettha awaits the Constitutional Court’s verdict on July 10, a decision that will seal his political fate. At the heart of the controversy lies Srettha’s decision to bring Pichit Chuenban into the fold – a move that’s sparked fervent debate.

Who is Pichit Chuenban, and why is his presence in the cabinet so contentious? Back in 2008, Pichit, alongside two colleagues, was sentenced to six months in prison for an audacious attempt to bribe Supreme Court officials. Their method? A lunchbox with a paper bag stuffed with 2 million baht in cash, aimed at influencing the outcome of the Ratchadaphisek land court case, which they were handling for Thaksin Shinawatra and his ex-wife, Khunying Potjaman na Pombejra.

The prime minister’s decision to appoint Pichit as a PM’s Office minister has drawn the ire of a group of senators, who have filed a petition urging the court to rule on the ethical implications of this appointment. They argue that Srettha should shoulder the responsibility for this controversial choice.

In a bid to salvage Srettha’s premiership, Pichit has since resigned from his cabinet position. However, the looming court ruling casts a long shadow over Srettha’s political future, with a decision expected next month.

As the nation collectively holds its breath, the fate of Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin hangs in the balance. The outcome of this high-stakes ethical case could either reaffirm his leadership or trigger a seismic shift in the Thai political landscape. Stay tuned as the story unfolds.


  1. Maria S June 23, 2024

    I can’t believe Srettha would appoint someone like Pichit! This shows poor judgment and lack of integrity.

    • Jake T. June 23, 2024

      Well, Maria, Srettha could have had no choice. Sometimes political decisions are more complicated than they seem.

      • Brittany James June 23, 2024

        Jake is right. We don’t know what pressures Srettha is facing behind closed doors.

      • Maria S June 23, 2024

        Thanks for the perspective, but appointing someone with a criminal past is a big red flag regardless of the circumstances.

  2. grower134 June 23, 2024

    Shouldn’t the people have a say in whether Srettha stays or goes? This top-down approach is outdated.

    • Steve June 23, 2024

      We have elections for a reason. People should trust the system rather than undermine it every time they disagree.

      • grower134 June 23, 2024

        Elections don’t always reflect the people’s voice. Corruption can skew results massively.

      • Nina P June 23, 2024

        Even with corruption, it’s better than relying on the whims of a few. Democracy has its flaws, but it’s the best we’ve got.

  3. Ahmed June 23, 2024

    Pichit stepping down is just a smokescreen. It doesn’t erase the fact that he was appointed in the first place!

    • David L. June 23, 2024

      Exactly, Ahmed! It feels like a half-hearted attempt to save face.

    • Rina M June 23, 2024

      Are we sure Srettha knew about Pichit’s past? Maybe he was coerced into the appointment.

    • Ahmed June 23, 2024

      Rina, even if he was coerced, it still shows poor leadership. Leaders should be able to stand up to such pressures.

  4. Tommy85 June 23, 2024

    This whole situation is just a witch-hunt to destabilize the government. Classic political maneuvering.

    • Sarah X June 23, 2024

      Tommy, it’s not a witch-hunt if there’s genuine concern about ethical violations. They need to be investigated.

      • Avi S June 23, 2024

        I agree with Sarah. Holding leaders accountable is important. It’s not about destabilizing, it’s about justice.

      • Tommy85 June 23, 2024

        Avi, if Srettha goes, the new leadership might not bring the stability we need either. It’s a lose-lose at this point.

  5. Kelly D June 23, 2024

    Srettha’s show is just propaganda to distract people from this scandal.

    • Hannah W. June 23, 2024

      Kelly, I think it’s natural for leaders to communicate directly with the public. It doesn’t mean it’s propaganda.

      • Kelly D June 23, 2024

        Hannah, face it. It’s all about controlling the narrative. They want to make him look good amid the chaos.

      • Andy June 23, 2024

        It’s hard to trust anything coming from politicians these days, to be honest.

  6. Greg June 23, 2024

    Ethics in politics is a joke anyway; everyone has skeletons in their closet. This is just overblown.

    • Jules June 23, 2024

      That’s a really cynical view, Greg. If we don’t hold politicians to ethical standards, what hope do we have?

    • Greg June 23, 2024

      Jules, I’m just being realistic. Idealism doesn’t fit in today’s political climate.

  7. Eleanor K. June 23, 2024

    Can the Constitutional Court’s ruling be trusted? There’s too much influence from political factions.

    • Rajesh N June 23, 2024

      You bring up a good point, Eleanor. Judicial independence is crucial for a fair trial.

      • Samantha A. June 23, 2024

        It’s sad that we even have to question the integrity of the court.

  8. Alice June 23, 2024

    Have people forgotten what Pichit did? Bribing court officials? This is corruption at its peak!

  9. Henry J. June 23, 2024

    Srettha should have vetted Pichit better or faced consequences. Leadership is about responsibility.

  10. armo229 June 23, 2024

    All these allegations could just be rival factions trying to take Srettha down.

    • Lauren June 23, 2024

      Even if true, there should still be accountability. Two wrongs don’t make a right.

  11. Theresa D. June 23, 2024

    Judicial systems should be transparent. The citizens deserve to know the full story.

    • Gareth June 23, 2024

      That transparency might expose more corruption than we’re ready to handle.

  12. Daniel K. June 23, 2024

    Srettha stepping down would only be a short-term solution. We need systemic change!

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