Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Elections in Thailand

The party allied to Thailand's ousted PM Thaksin Shinawatra has won the general election, initial results from the Election Commission show.

The results of the elections in Thailand in must be a personal victory for ousted PM Thaksin. Far away from his country, he was still able to command influence despite the grip of the military on power. The vote for his party is partly a vote for him. It’s a message for those seeking democracy that the military’s place is in the barracks and not in government seats.

This means democracy can be a reality if the military step aside and leave elected institutions exercise their political powers. In view of the history of coups in Thailand, the military will probably continue to stand by for any possible intervention in the Thai political affairs. Thailand remains stable despite political shakeups thanks to the influence of the King who seems obeyed by all. But this isn’t enough for the Thai people to enjoy a better life. They also need effective leaders who can deal with their urgent problems.

It remains to see if former PM Thaksin will be able to return to his country or he will be the dragon behind the throne. His being kept outside the country as a kind of political refugee will put into question the validity of the elections and who’s really in charge of the country despite the facade of elected institutions.


james said...

A nation doesn't usually get the leader they want, but they always get the leader they deserve. If the majority of people accept and embrace corruption they will get a leader who does the same.

Anonymous said...

In Thailand's case, I don't think there has been a single government without corruption. For Thai people, the best we hope for is at least to get something back in return. The government before the coup has shown people how to make a living, paid off national debts, gave green lights to much needed transportation face-lift (International Airport, Sky trains, Underground trains), fought crimes. The standard of living is certainly better for city people and rural dwellers alike. It's not a surprise why so many people are ready to overlook the flaws that are common.