‘Mob Fest’ to Hold Mock Censure Debate Outside Parliament

PM Prayut Chan-o-cha addresses the Parliament during a censure debate on Feb. 18, 2021.

BANGKOK — A group of activists say they will host a carnival-themed protest outside the Parliament on Friday evening as a warmup to a major rally scheduled to take place tomorrow.

Billed as “Mob Fest,” the rally will run from 5pm till midnight in front of the parliament building, according to one of the organizers, 22-year-old Siraphob Attohi. The activist said his group wants to hold a parallel censure debate in tandem with the real one unfolding inside the seat of the legislative power.

“We will invite representatives from many groups to speak out,” Siraphob, who studies at Chulalongkorn University, said in a phone interview. “For example, about abolishing Article 112, about government assistance in the COVID pandemic, and reforms of the military. It will be like a no-confidence debate outside the Parliament.”

The four-day censure debate is expected to conclude today.

Siraphob also said the protest will insist on the three key demands of the pro-democracy movement: a new charter, PM Prayut Chan-o-cha’s resignation, and reforms of the monarchy.

PM Prayut declined to answer reporters’ questions on Friday morning whether there would be any violence at today’s protest.

Police water trucks were already parked outside the Parliament by the late morning, though it is unclear whether they will be used. Police deployed both the water trucks and tear gas on demonstrators the last time they marched to the Parliament on Nov. 17.

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