Prime Minister of Thailand, Prayut Chan-o-cha yesterday warned that a planned anti-government scheduled for tomorrow runs the risk of initiating a new COVID-19 surge in a nation starting to come out of the worst the virus has thrown at it over the past few months.
If a surge were to take place the prime minister warned it could lead to new lockdown measures affecting businesses and the nations wider economic recovery.
“Let me take this opportunity to speak directly to those who wish to gather for various reasons,” the prime minister said to viewers of TV Pool “When you gather in mobs, you are creating an enormous risk of new infections.
The Saturday rally is planned for Thammasat University’s Tha Prachan campus in the capital Bangkok, and will be headed by the activist group United Front of Thammasat and Demonstration (UFTD).
The prime minister did accept the grievances of the protesters saying “I respect your opinions but right now, our country has very much more urgent and painful issues that need to be addressed”
“That is the economic destruction brought about by COVID. Let’s not make the situation worse than it is.”
Whether or not those planning to attend the rally not opt not to do so, remains to be seen.
“Please think of the tens of millions of other people with whom you share this country — mass gatherings come at a very heavy price for everyone: the risk of new infections, the risk of mass outbreaks and the risk of a return to lockdowns,” the PM continued.
“Let’s try and get through this global crisis and defeat Covid together first. Then we can come back to politics.”