A big proportion of New Mandala‘s readers and contributors have a serious interest in Thai politics. Unsurprisingly, many of those people are based in Thailand.
To my mind, they are perfectly placed to take advantage of Deputy Prime Minister Sonthi Boonyaratglin’s generous offer to those who inform on vote buyers: “Pending the issuing of new regulations, informants might get a percentage from a fine ranging from Bt20,000 to Bt200,000 imposed on vote buyers”.
Depending on that percentage this could be a lucrative sideline for New Mandala readers who are already closely watching the upcoming election. I do wonder – who will be the first reader to grab the cash? The Colonel (with his impeccable connections)? Or will somebody else come out of the woodwork to take the money?
Any readers who do take up General Sonthi’s challenge should let us all know how it goes.
Long-time readers may recall that Andrew Walker “was a beneficiary of Thaksin’s munificence before the 2005 election, receiving 100 baht, a Thai Rak Thai jacket and a first aid kit at a meeting [he] attended with villagers in rural Chiang Mai province”. Would a foreign researcher be able to take a share of General Sonthi’s largesse? Perhaps the better question is – would they want to?