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Censure Debate

Poll gives opposition better scores than govt

People surveyed by ABAC Real-Time POLL gave the opposition better scores than the government in terms of the quality of information exposed in the censure debate, although more than half still trusted in the prime minister, her deputy and other ministers grilled during the three day no-confidence motion to continue to carry out their duties.

A total of 1,231 people over 18 were interviewed in 17 provinces across the country on Monday and Tuesday.

Some 68 per cent said they still trusted in PM Yingluck Shinawatra to carry out her duty, 56 per cent said they trusted in Deputy Prime Minister Chalerm Yoobamrung and 53 per cent said they still believed in Chatt Kuldiloke as the former deputy transport minister.

Some 50.6 per cent of respondents said they had faith in Defence Minister Gen Sukampol Suwannathat.

About 45 per cent said the opposition had presented new information that they had not known about before, while 29 per cent believed the government had presented hitherto unheard-of information.

Around 44 per cent said the opposition's information was clear and comprehensible, while 31 per cent believed the government had made such a presentation. Forty-three per cent said the opposition had put forward credible information, while 36 per cent said the government had done so.

More than 56 per cent of respondents suggested that the administration should remove ministers believed to be involved in corruption; otherwise, it would experience a crisis of faith and could be faced with more anti-government rallies.

In-depth interviews of those who oppose and support the government revealed that although the majority believed the opposition had delivered a well-done job in the debate and had convinced them that corruption exists in this government, interviewees still accepted that corruption was acceptable as long it was done in moderation.

Most said they would vote for the current government because it had many policies that support the poor. Those supporting the opposition suggested that it should come up with populist policies that could compete with those of the government.

Ex-senator tweets his views

Meanwhile, former senator and ex-media professional Somkiat On-wimil tweeted that overall, MPs had delivered a poor performance during the censure debate.

He said their statements were not concise, had failed to make the point, were rude and cynical, had no essence and were unfriendly.

However, there were some MPs who in his view had given a satisfactory performance, such as Opposition Leader Abhisit Vejjajiva, whose speech he said was polite, relevant, straight to the point, had essence and academic value and contained no hostility.

Democrat Jurin Laksanawisit's closing speech was almost as good, because he touched on new points, said Somkiat.

The fact that government MPs jumped at every chance to exercise their right to defend allegations against them showed that they were extremely worried about the information exposed by the opposition, he added.

Somkiat's additional messages in his tweet said Pheu Thai party-list MP Sunai Chulapongsathorn had been too aggressive and bullying during the debate. He said Sunai had also engaged in a fruitless attempt to stop Democrat Warong Detkitwikrom, whom he said had presented excellent information that could bring changes to the rice-pledging scheme.

Democrat Pussadi Thamthai, meanwhile, delivered a clear, sincere and polite speech that reflects how society feels about the PM, and which would likely make Yingluck improve herself, he said.

The PM looked more confident and polite, he said, but showed a lack of knowledge about administrative affairs as she could not answer questions in depth. She needs to work harder, he added.

"Chalerm Yoobamrung, Surapong Towichukchaikul and Natthawut Saikua still have a long way to go to reach their potential. Chalerm may have an uphill task to catapult himself to the level of high-quality MP because he has been in the political arena for ages, but we have not seen quality or change in him. Pheu Thai's Surin MP Prasith Chaisrisa has brought shame to his party, and Surin people will not vote for him again. The debate should stir intellect or wisdom, not emotion. I would ask Surin people if they are happy with such a low-quality MP," said Somkiat.


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