Mob rule in Buriram - translated and summarized from Thai Rath, January 7, 2008
The general public may be fooled into perceiving that people in Buriram province are showing a keen interest in political matters. This may be especially the case if some get the idea that the recent demonstration in the province was a genuine attempt by locals to maintain their electoral rights.
It was surprising when thousands of Buriram Province citizens, from various districts, recently gathered at the Provincial Hall. Those gathered were protesting against the recent Electoral Commission decision to award ‘red’ cards to three parliamentary candidates for constituencies in the province. This crowd gathered so quickly that one might be forgiven for thinking that Buriram people have been keeping themselves well abreast of political developments. However, it has since been reported (but not proven) that the protesters received 200 baht per person to turn up at the Provincial Hall demonstration.
The protesters’ insistence that the ‘red’ cards should be withdrawn is, in any case, a true example of mob rule in action - as the demonstrators have made it clear that they will not accept the awarding of such cards under any circumstances.
If Buriram people really long for justice and care about their Kingdom, they should spend more time trying to investigate the corruption in their province - instead of gathering to support cheats.