Apanhado pela boca

O primeiro-ministro da Tailândia foi afastado do poder. Desviou fundos públicos? Corrompeu instituições oficiais? Subornou agentes da autoridade? Matou alguém? Rendeu-se perante os opositores que se barricaram no Parlamento?

Não. Apareceu em alguns episódios de um programa de culinária.

“Thailand’s prime minister was forced to resign along with his Cabinet on Tuesday after the Constitutional Court ruled that he had broken a conflict-of-interest law by hosting TV cooking shows while in office.

“The defendant has violated Article 267 of the constitution, and his position as prime minister has ended,” Chat Chonlaworn, the head of the nine-judge panel, told the court.

Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej’s supporters immediately vowed to bring him back to power, indicating that Thailand remains gripped in a deep political crisis that has virtually paralyzed the government, spooked the financial markets and scared away tourists.

Chat said the Cabinet will remain in a caretaker position until a new administration is installed.

The judgment, broadcast live on television and radio, was greeted with loud cheers and claps from Samak’s opponents who have occupied his office compound since Aug. 26 to demand his resignation.

Samak, a self-proclaimed foodie, hosted a popular television cooking show — “Tasting and Complaining” — for seven years before becoming prime minister earlier this year. He made several appearances after taking office, breaking a constitutional prohibition on private employment while in office.”


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