Saturday, February 04, 2006

Shin Sale Fallout: Two Ministers resign

"Thaksin has faced criticism over his family's 73.3 billion baht ($1.88 billion) sale last week of a controlling stake in telecommunications conglomerate Shin Corp to Singapore's Temasek Holdings.

The sale, the biggest ever of a listed Thai company, triggered outrage amid media accusations of insider trading, tax evasion and even national security threats." The Nation, 5 Feb 06

Friday: Culture Minister Uraiwan Thienthong announced her departure from the Cabinet, saying her decision was based on the need to uphold good governance. This is the bitch who banned Bangkok Inside Out after it had received numerous accolades from both Thai and foreign newspapers and with no explanation or opportunity for public comment. Good governance in a democratic society is served by her resignation. Good choice!

Saturday: Information and Communications Technology Minister Sora-at Klinprathum has tendered his resignation from the Thaksin Shinawatra Cabinet. Sora-et, in a failed bid to curry favor with Thaksin, banned an unprecedented number of political websites in Thailand and offered kudos to China on their policy of internet censorship. As these moves had more to do with an outdated and misguided paternalism than any real ability to lead Thailand in a democratic direction, Sora-et's decision to leave can only be welcomed. Excellent resignation!