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Expelled MP says persecuted after he exposed corruption

The Prachin Buri MP expelled from Move Forward for alleged sexual harassment, Wuttiphong Thonglour, claims he is being persecuted because of a conflict with the aide of another MP who is a member of the party executive.

A meeting of party MPs and executive members on Nov 1 concluded there were grounds to a woman’s charges against Mr Wuttiphong, and subsequently voted to expel him from the MFP.

Mr Wuttiphong said there had been attempts to drum him out of the party since he discovered that an assistant to an MP on the executive committee was involved in a demand for a bribe of several million baht from a garbage disposal company in Prachin Buri province over the purchase of some land.

At a press conference on Monday, Mr Wuttiphong shsowed pictures, audio clips and texted messages he said were evidence of corruption in the land purchase.

He said he gave the evidence to the party to investigate but they paid no attention to it. An executive committee member took the matter for investigation by himself, and concluded there was no corruption.

Mr Wuttiphong said he was confident this had led to his expulsion from the party.

He said this same MP’s assistant, whose name started with the initial “S”, took the woman who claimed she had been sexually harassed to file a complaint with the party. The woman was also led to give an interview to the media, who were against the MFP, claiming she had been sexually abused, he added.

Mr Wuttiphong said that in holding the press conference he was not demanding justice or petitioning against the party’s resolution. He only wanted fellow MPs who voted for his expulsion to have a better understanding of him.

The MP said he was considering petitioning the Election Commission to consider if the party’s expulsion resolution was lawful. The National Anti-Corruption Commission might also, itself, take it up for consideration.

Asked about the 30 days he has to join a new party, or lose his electorate seat, Mr Wuttiphong said he had not yet thought about it. He wanted to talk to people in his constituency first.

Asked about an invitation by the leader of the Thai Civilised Party, Mongkolkit Suksintaranon, to join his party, Mr Wuttiphongsaid he personally would prefer a party which could give him a bigger stage to show his abilities.

Mr Mongkolkit’s party won no seats in the May general election.

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