Saturday, September 17, 2011

Dr Ukrit denies all possible suspicious motives in new role

Dr Ukrit Mongkolnavin, who has just been appointed by the Yingluck government to head a new "National Rule of Law Independent Commission," wants to make it clear that his 12-member panel won't touch any issue that is related to Thaksin Shinawatra.

The veteran academic-cum-lawyer-cum-politician, who turns 78 this year, of course realizes how sensitive his new posting could be, especially to those who immediately cast doubt on this move which could be seen to eclipse the work of the Truth for Reconciliation Commission headed by Dr Kanit na Nakhon.

Dr Ukrit was also quick to stress that is committee's work won't overlap that of Dr Kanit's. But it isn't clear what exactly would this new independent body will be doing apart from the general statement from th Cabinet that the panel will look into all legislative aspects to ensure that the rule of law is enforced whether in the executive, judicial or legislative branches. A very challenging tall order indeed!

Dr Ukrit realizes that critics will point to his close relations with Thaksin in the past. But he was quick to emphasize that he had decided to take up the offer "because the country has problems that need to be sorted out."

He will name the other 11 members of his commission, suggesting that politics won't be dictating his work. The former House Speaker is apparently trying very hard to impress upon all concerned that he intends to demonstrate how independent he is in carrying out this new task that has yet to be clarified to the public.

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