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Will Thailand’s Government Dance on the Edge? A Potential Constitutional Crisis Looms Over Financing Schemes!

Sirikanya Tansakun, the distinguished deputy leader of Move Forward, maintains a firm belief that the government is contemplating the utilization of the “Loan Act” as means to finance its ventures, a move that could potentially draw the attention of the Constitutional Court. This could then lead to a blockade on the disputed policy.

Sirikanya voiced these thoughts in response to the Friday proclamation made by Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin pertaining to the 10,000 baht digital wallet policy. The driving force behind her skepticism lies within the questionable source of the budget that the government will be required to tap into, to fulfill the promise of providing 10,000 baht through digital wallets for expenditure to every Thai citizen aged 16 and above.

The Prime Minister may have enacted a revision to the eligibility criteria by isolating individuals with a monthly income crossing the 70,000 baht threshold or those with bank savings tallying at an excess of 500,000 baht. Albeit, concerns still loom over the breakthrough of the scheme, with risks circulating around the chances of the scheme failing to lift off altogether.

Sirikanya has proposed a speculative theory, outlining the strenuous path embraced by the PM to decree a royal enactment, aimed at sanctioning a 500 billion baht loan to bolster the project funding, a move that significantly hinders the process of discerning the source of funding.

She raised pointers indicating that the initiation of a loan decree may tread on the line of constitution violation, as well as infringing upon the Financial Discipline Act, since such concessions for loans could only be sanctioned on grounds of urgent necessity. As it stands currently, she remarked, there isn’t any urgent necessity.

She draws parallels between the current scenario and a similar precedent wherein, under the rule of the former Pheu Thai government led by Yingluck Shinawatra, a loan decree for 2 trillion baht was proposed, which ended up being contested at the Constitutional Court. Observations have led her to conclude that the government’s current strategy for securing funding seemingly suggests a hesitation around the successful realization of this project.

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