MFP dismisses Thaksin’s remarks on ‘swayed vote’

MFP dismisses Thaksin's remarks on 'swayed vote'

Success came from policies, it says

The Move Forward Party (MFP) has nothing to do with a network that fugitive former premier Thaksin Shinawatra insinuated the party may have used to sway Sunday’s election in its favour, deputy party leader Phicharn Chaowapatanawong said yesterday.

Rather, the party’s success at the ballot can be credited to its political ideology and policies, Mr Phicharn said.

He made the remarks in response to a social media session Thaksin held on YouTube on Tuesday night called CareTalk x Care ClubHouse. In it, he discussed the election and his potential return to Thailand.

During the session, Thaksin congratulated the MFP for its victory, which is expected to lead to a significant shift in Bangkok’s political landscape. The MFP is associated with the colour orange and has talked openly about its reformist agenda.

Thaksin shared his belief that the MFP may have been operating an information operation (IO) network and using it to propagate a rumour that Pheu Thai — which finished a close runner-up in the poll — was targeting a different coalition than the MFP’s planned alliance, resulting in some voters likely losing confidence in the party.

Thaksin also hailed the MFP as a “disruptor” that has mastered social media and user-generated content (UGC) to triumph over Pheu Thai and other parties.

He also suggested senior members of Pheu Thai step down to allow a new generation of more media-savvy politicians take the reins of the party he is still closely associated with.

Thaksin said the time has come for the party to undergo what he termed “disruptive innovation”.

He said Pheu Thai failed to disrupt itself enough to overcome the MFP, which he described as being like an SME that beat a much larger and better-established company by offering high-quality products that keep customers satisfied.

Finally, Thaksin said he still wants to return home to help raise his grandchildren.

His daughter Paetongtarn was one of Pheu Thai’s presidential candidates in Sunday’s election. Mr Phicharn said Thaksin’s comments were aimed at undermining the MFP’s success and were an insult to voters.

“The MFP insists it does not have either the budget or the intention to carry out such an operation [as Thaksin claimed regarding the online network],” he said.