The Thai Government has hit back at opposition claims criticizing the prolonged state of emergency, saying that the executive decree is not a way to reinforce its power and is enacted only as a response to the coronavirus.
Numerous parties have called for an end to the current emergency decree, which was extended until at least the end of May, as they feel the covid-19 situation is now under control in Thailand.
Some have claimed that the Thai Prime Minister, Prayut Chan-o-cha, has prolonged the state of emergency for his own political benefit and to consolidate power for his ruling Palang Pracharath Party party.
However, these claims were flatly denied by government spokeswoman, Narumon Pinyosinwat, who claimed that the Prime Minister is closely monitoring the situation and has already begun to gradually relax restrictions, referencing the reopening of shopping malls across the country yesterday.
She said that the present situation is not promising enough to end the emergency decree despite many consecutive days of very low or no new coronavirus cases. Ms. Pinyosinwat continued:
“The government values all parties and is listening to the recommendations and proposals that are of public and national interest. But it is impossible to end the imposition of the emergency decree now. If the pandemic is better controlled and people remain cooperative, the government can do it sooner.”
However, she called for cooperation among all parties to combat covid-19 and assured critics that the government is not prolonging the emergency decree for its own benefit, saying:
“However, all parties must seriously cooperate with the government’s efforts to curb covid-19. The government is not prolonging the exercise of the emergency decree to serve its own interest or to cling to power as many parties have accused. The government understands well that the country has economic problems. The government is solving it and helping all groups of people who are affected.”
She finished by promising that if control of the virus continues to improve, all businesses and activities can eventually resume.