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Former Thai cabinet members impeached over rice trading scam

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  9 May 2015 12:00 AM GMT

Bangkok, May 8: Former Thai cabinet members allegedly involved in a rice-trading corruption scandal were on Friday impeached by the tiol Legislative Assembly (NLA).

Members of the legislative assembly cast overwhelming votes to impeach former commerce minister Boonsong Teriyabhirom and former deputy commerce minister Poom Sarapon on charges of involvement in corruption earlier alleged by the tiol Anti-Corruption Commission over scandalous rice dealings a few years ago. The NLA members voted 180-6 and 182-5 to impeach Boonsong and Poom respectively while a former Foreign Trade Department chief, mely Mat Soiploy, was also impeached by the legislative body for similar corruption charges. The former cabinet members had earlier dismissed the charges saying no justice had been served them, however. Under a rice subsidy programme earlier implemented by a previous Yingluck Shiwatra government, Boonsong and Poom had allegedly failed to combat graft involving the “doctored” trading of rice on government-to-government basis only to see the government suffer heavy fincial losses.

As a result of the impeachment due to the alleged involvement in the rice scam, the two former cabinet members are automatically banned from politics for five years from now. (Ians)

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