When two Ministers in Prime Minister Abhisit’s cabinet decided to forgo stepping down to rerun for election, the first and foremost question is why. If they were found guilty of a violation that caused them to lose their MP status, and refuse to take the ethical action of stepping down, one can only conclude some personal self serving interests are clouding their better judgment.
‘As long as the boss doesn’t know’ seems to be the name of the game in the Abhisit government. Most certainly Connecting the Dots does not want to go around drawing conclusions based on action or inaction of people, but there are just some things that just seem so out of place, one can not help but think out loud.
The last time there was significant focus on people not stepping down when they should, had to do with the Election Commission. They were very clearly under the influence of Thaksin and the last 3 members refused to step down. That was remedied by the court with some jail time. This resulted in a complete re-seating of the Election Commission that was carefully screened.
Looking at the reason the Ministers should step down, it is clear some involve common sense. If they intend to rerun for election, then they will not be able to campaign and effectively discharge the duties of the office of Minister. This is where the night meets day. People that are basically corrupt would argue why step down, and people that are basically honest would argue the opposite why stay.
At the very least refusal to step down from a Ministers post would send up a yellow warning flag and start some investigations as to why. Knowing how Prime Minister Abhisit thinks, it is fair to say such investigations have already been commissioned but in a very subtle and quiet way so as not to draw political heat. Also if the Ministers are performing their duties well, there is no reason why Prime Minister Abhisit would not reappoint them once the elections have finished.
This clearly highlights Abhisit’s western education and thinking process as compared to Thai. In the west there is no loss of face to step down. In fact it is seen as the opposite and face is gained because of the moral and ethical ramifications. Also by the Ministers in question stepping down, it would send a message to other countries and companies looking to do more trade with Thailand that things are at least looking on the up and up.
Whether Prime Minister Abhisit applies political heat, or more correctly how much political heat is yet to be seen. Certainly it will be measured by the Ministers performance and direction of their moral compass. In any event this more or less qualifies as a popcorn eating event, but only snack size. The large size popcorn is reserved for the November 11 entry when the organic matter hits the fan.