After the suspension of Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, the constitutional court in Bangkok wants to decide on the political future of the head of government soon. Two weeks ago, the court granted an opposition request that Prayut, who had ruled since a coup in 2014, had already reached the end of his term. According to the constitution, this is limited to eight years.
The court scheduled a special session for Thursday to examine statements by the 68-year-old, who has since commented on the allegations, and various witnesses. The newspaper "Bangkok Post" reported on Tuesday, citing legal sources. The judges then wanted to decide whether the evidence and testimonies were sufficient. If so, a date for the verdict should be announced.
The background is a dispute about which date is considered the beginning of Prayut's term of office, which would also determine the end accordingly. The opposition cites August 24, 2014 as the first day of office. At that time, the military in Thailand had seized power and the army chief, General Prayut, took over the post.
His supporters, on the other hand, say the new constitution has only been in effect since 2017. Prayut's reign must therefore be calculated from 2017 - or even from 2019, when the last parliamentary elections were held in Thailand. The next parliamentary elections in the Southeast Asian country are expected to be held in 2023.