Suspended Thanathorn Defiant on Court Ruling

Future Forward Party chairman Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit flashes an anti-junta “three finger salute” at a news conference on May 23, 2019.

BANGKOK — Future Forward Party leader Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit has expressed disagreement with a court decision to suspend his MP status indefinitely.

Speaking at a Thursday night news conference after the Constitutional Court ruled he must cease working as a lawmaker while it hears a legal complaint against him, Thanathorn said the case appears to have been rushed under suspicious circumstances.

“I do not agree with the decision of the court,” Thanathorn said. “I want to ask the public … am I being afforded justice?”

Thanathorn also maintained he is still a prime ministerial candidate for his party.
“Future Forward Party and I would like to affirm that we are determined to continue walking forward to collect votes from political parties that oppose dictatorship,” the party leader said.

He spoke just hours after the court took up a complaint from the Election Commission, which accused Thanathorn of breaching election laws by still owning shares in a media firm after registering as an MP candidate.

But Thanathorn said the Election Commission subcommittee tasked with investigating the matter had yet to conclude its inquiry when the main commission forwarded the case to the court for deliberation.

He also said he was given no chance to explain and defend himself to the Election Commission before it decided to proceed with the investigation.