Democrat says Thai-Lao MOU on dam construction may violate charter

August 5th, 2008 - 3:59 pm ICT by Amrit Rashmisrisethi  

Deputy Leader of the Democrat Party Kraisak Chunhavan (ไกรศักดิ์ ชุณหะวัณ) says the government’s signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Laos on the construction of Ban Kum (บ้านกุ่ม) Dam in Ubon Ratchathani province may violate the constitution.

According to Mr Kraisak, the MOU was signed by Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej and former Foreign Affairs Minister Noppadon Pattama. Mr Kraisak says the MOU may violate Article 190 of the Constitution as it is an international agreement which must receive approval from the parliament before it is signed. In addition, the deputy leader says the dam construction has no environmental impact assessment and the construction of any dam at Mekong River is prohibited if it is not approved by the Mekong Committee consists of representatives of Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam.

Mr Kraisak also says the MOU previously had stated that the Italian-Thai Development Plc and the Asia Corp Holding were responsible for the construction but the Cabinet meeting later used the word private sector instead of the names of the two companies. The Democrat party will assign its legal team to study the MOU before requesting the Constitutional Court to rule on it, Mr Kraisak says.

Source : National News Bureau, Public Relations Department of Thailand

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