Activist demands Pita be disqualified for allegedly holding media shares
Political activist Ruangkrai Leekitwattana claimed on Tuesday that Move Forward leader Pita Limjaroenrat was not qualified to contest in the May 14 election because he holds shares in a media company.
Ruangkrai said he will submit a complaint with the Election Commission (EC) on Wednesday morning demanding that Pita be removed from the race.
The activist was previously a member of the ruling Palang Pracharath Party but left it in January last year to purportedly monitor the government’s performance.
Latest opinion surveys show that Pita is one of the most popular PM candidates, and his party is trailing close behind Pheu Thai Party.
Ruangkrai, however, claims that Pita holds 42,000 shares in ITV Plc, which is a media firm.
The activist points out that the Constitution’s Article 98 (3) prohibits owners or shareholders of media firms to run in national elections.
He claims he has checked ITV’s shareholders’ list and learned that as of April 7 this year, Pita was shareholder No 6,121 and held 42,000 shares.
He added that ITV is an active media company that holds radio broadcasts and runs an advertising business via its website. The company reportedly earned 21 million baht in revenue last year. The company also held its last shareholders’ meeting on April 26.
Ruangkrai said he will ask the EC to find out when Pita acquired the shares.
If it is found that he bought the shares before the March 24, 2019 election, then he should be retroactively disqualified from the 2019 poll, he said.
The activist also questioned why Pita did not include the ITV shares when he declared his assets upon taking the MP’s post on May 25, 2019.