Suthep vows to shut PM out of Govt House, taunts Chalerm
February 16, 2014 00:00 By The Nation
Anti-government protest chief Suthep Thaugsuban vowed on Sunday night to block Government House on Monday morning to prevent caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra from entering the compound.
The People's Democratic Reform Committee leader also dared caretaker Labour Minister and anti-protest operations chief Chalerm Yoobamrung to appear at the compound on Monday morning. He said the protesters would begin their march to surround it at 7.30am and told Chalerm to be there by 8.30am.
Suthep said Chalerm would be denounced as a coward if he fails to show up at the Government House and he should also disband the anti-protest centre.
Suthep also said that Bt25 million donated by the protesters to help indebted farmers would be used to cover court fees for farmers filing civil lawsuits against Yingluck and responsible ministers for failing to pay them for rice pledged under the government’s subsidy scheme.
At a ceremony on Tuesday to be held at a yet-to-be announced time at the Pathumwan rally stage, the money will be handed to the Lawyers’ Council of Thailand under His Majesty’s Patronage, which will handle the cases for free. It will be divided into 125 parts, each of which will be no bigger than Bt200,000, for use with 125 individual lawsuits.
The remaining Bt1.2 million, plus another Bt1 million to be collected in future donations, will be given to 11 families of farmers who committed suicide due to stress over non-payment of debts after the caretaker government failed to pay them. Each of the 11 families will be given Bt200,000 at handover ceremonies on the Pathumwan stage.
Suthep condemned an M-79 grenade attack on the Criminal Courthouse on Friday night, as well as a shooting at the home of Anti-Corruption Organisation of Thailand chairman Pramont Sutheewong, also on Friday night.