EDITORIAL: The PM must keep his words as state of emergency is fully enforced in time of a pandemic crisis

People are bearing the brunt and waiting to see the prospective results

From some few cluster cases, the spread of Coronavirus has escalated during the past two weeks without necessity to declare whether it has entered the so-called Phase 3, which means the full outbreak with sources being almost untraceable.

The situation has become socially justified for the government to decide to enforce probably the most sweeping power available for an elected government; the state of emergency declaration under the Emergency Decree.

Under this legitimate power, a prime minister, with endorsement from the Cabinet, can overtake power of his ministers and command the situation across the ministries, like what Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha did on Wednesday when officially declaring the state of emergency under the Decree.

In other words, to command the pandemic Coronavirus crisis, PM Prayut has taken absolute power in his own hands without steering any coups.

And do not forget that this is the first time that such the state of emergency has been declared to cover the whole country and to be agianst the disease.

This is highly cirtical as there would be no check and balance in place while he is wielding this power to suppress the virus. 

Power, as the old sayings point, can be corrupt without checks, and PM Prayut, who comes to the office via an election, must bear this in mind tremedously when wielding this power given by this Decree. 

When enforcing the Decree on Wednesday, he seemed to realise its repercussions especially on the prospect concerning people’s rights. 

So he justified the enforcement by saying weeks or months ahead from now, it would be a tough time for all Thais and the country as they will be going through a big test from Coronavirus Disease or COVID-19, which might become intensified as it spreads out.

He called the situation as “a turning point”, and called on people to realise this reality together.

If that’s not enough, he also pledged to save people and the country, vowing to do every way and intensify it as a prime minister in order to curb the spread of the virus.

Last but not least are the words that he said; “I will command the situation and deal with it in every aspect myself… I will take a lead in this mission, and I will report to you people.”

Upon his declaration, there is a very high price paid already for placing trust in PM Prayut’s words as everyone’s rights have been deprived so as to cooperate with the state in exchange for the chance to overcome the virus.

PM Prayut therefore has no other ways now but keeps his words by quickly acting and showing the prospective results_and definitely, in the most accountable and transparent manner.