The People's Power Party (Phak Palang Prachachon; PPP - Sanskrit Prajājan = People) is a Thai political party founded on November 9, 1998 by Police Lieutenant Colonel Garn Tienkaew. Currently the party leader is Somchai Wongsawat (acting), the Party Secretary General is Surapong Suebwonglee and the Party Spokesperson is Kuthep Saikrajarng.
On 29 July 2007
, some former Thai Rak Thai party
(TRT) members, after the party was disbanded following a coup,, agreed to contest the 2007 elections
as candidates of the People's Power Party (PPP). This occurred after the Thai Rak Thai Party was dissolved
by the Thai Supreme Court on May 30
. It also follows the ban on participating in politics from many former TRT party politicians such as Newin Chidchop
, Buriram and former leader Thaksin Shinawatra
who formed their own parties. Many other former TRT members have also formed their own parties including Ruam Jai Thai
and Puea Pandin Party.
Former Bangkok governor Samak Sundaravej and former TRT Cabinet Minister Surapong Suebwonglee were elected People's Power Party leader and secretary general respectively on August 24, 2007.
After some former TRT members joined the PPP, the junta allegedly issued a classified order to suppress the activities of the Party. The order was leaked to the public, leading to a complaint to the Election Commission from the PPP.
The Electoral Commission has deployed 200,000 soldiers and police to maintain security and 1,500 officers to watch for election fraud. Charnchai Silapauaychai, a popular former Democrat Party member from Phrae who moved to the PPP for the 2008 election, was assassinated. Five men, one of them cousin of a powerful Democrat Party MP were arrested, but all denied involvement.
Impeachment and resignations
's 5-month-old government was in great trouble on July 10
, 2008 after Pattama, as 3rd top official in the ruling People Power Party (PPP) resigned, effective Monday. Its deputy leader Yongyut Tiyapairat, was banned from politics for 5 years, after the Supreme Court affirmed vote buying charges against him. Then, Chiya Sasomsub was removed from office by another top court, for illegally concealing his wife's assets. The Constitutional Court ruled on July 8
that Noppadon and the entire cabinet violated the charter by failing to ask parliamentary approval for a Cambodia deal. Noppadon signed the agreement on June, to support Cambodia's bid to seek World Heritage status for the 900-year-old Preah Vihear temple
. The Opposition filed a petition with deputy Senate Speaker Nikom Wairatpanit to impeach Noppadon Pattama
over Preah Vihear Temple issue. Sathit Wongnongtoei submitted 141 signatures of MPs. Noppadon was accused of violating Article 190 and 270 of the Constitution. The Opposition filed the motion before Noppadon stepped down.
The PPP party's set of policies is an extension of the populist welfare policies of the former TRT government. The PPP has promised to offer amnesty for the banned TRT politicians, to bring Thaksin Shinwatra back to Thailand and remove any charges against him. Throughout the lead up to the 2007 election, the PPP members have faced charges that they engaged in vote buying, that former TRT members banned from politics have appeared in public to support the PPP, and that several illegal CDs
have been distributed in rallies. Thaksin Shinawatra and his family currently face multiple charges of corruption including telecommunications, property and family deals. TRT politicians also face charges of corruption in multiple state asset sales including PTT, the illegality of two-thirds of the number lotteries, and more recently a possible link between the bribery charges leveled against Thaksin who was formerly appointed governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand by Governor Juthamas.
The PPP's expected primary voter base are the former TRT strongholds of the North, Northeast, East and Central regions of Thailand..
The legitimacy of the PPP win is being challenged on several fronts. The Supreme Court is set to hear a claim that the PPP is essentially a proxy of the banned political party Thai Rak Thai, and should thus also be banned. The election commission is also investigating the results of 83 seats, and as a consequence three PPP candidates have been disqualified.