Academics urged to find a solution for the country

national April 26, 2014 00:00

By Chanikarn Phumhiran
The Natio

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Dr Kasem Wattanachai, a member of the Privy Council, yesterday called on Thai intellectuals and academics to help bring the country's political turmoil to an end, adding that the political divide in the Kingdom had worsened over the past decade.

Thai society has been shrouded in the dark over the past year owing to the populist policies employed by politicians, he said.
“People are infatuated with materialism and consumerism,” he said.
He also noted that the mass media needs to look into what it feeds the people, adding that media’s job was to provide essential information instead of just entertaining the public as it does now. 
Dr Kasem also lamented the fact that most Thais revered the rich and powerful, even if they had committed wrongdoings. 
In a recent survey conducted by Assumption University, up to 80 per cent of the respondents admitted to being involved in corruption. 
“This is shocking! I would like to urge Thai people, especially civil servants, to light a candle to rid the country of corruption. What will happen to our nation if we don’t help each other?” he asked. 
Meanwhile, Ombudsman Siracha Charoenpanich said the Thai society was in a critical situation and required immediate action. Thais needed to return to their roots in order to bring Thailand back to what it used to be, he said. 
“If we want to be a developed country, we need to build a discipline like Germany, Japan and South Korea,” he said, adding that all agencies need to be honest and not allow corruption. 
“Those who don’t respect the law but claim they love democracy are false,” he said.