Four Commerce Ministry officials have been issued arrest warrants by the Centre for Maintaining Peace and Order for allegedly defying the emergency decree and joining anti-government protesters on the People's Democratic Reform Committee's stages.
Those four officials will also face a disciplinary investigation for flouting the civil-service code of conduct by mixing up with politics.
Yanyong Phuangrach, caretaker deputy commerce minister, said yesterday that he had ordered the ministry’s permanent secretary to send evidence to the CMPO against the four staff – two from the International Trade Promotion Department and one each from the Business Development and Trade Negotiations departments.
The evidence includes a video showing clearly who was on the PDRC’s stage, he said.
The ministry needs to set a precedent showing that government officials should not get involved with political activities, he said.
He insisted that he had no intention of gaining any political benefit by harassing civil servants.
Although those officials joined the PDRC activities after office hours, as state employees they should be neutral and not participate in any political campaigns, he said.
The ministry is also considering filing charges against former government officials who joined the PDRC and accused the ministry of breeding corruption, Yanyong said.