Thai court orders PM to resign over TV cooking show

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Bangkok, Sep 9 (UNI) Thailand's Constitution Court today ordered Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej to resign for violating the constitution by hosting a cooking show on television for commercial gain.

However, the Court allowed the Cabinet to function as a caretaker government for the next 30 days till a new prime minister is elected by parliament.

Mr Samak's People Power Party (PPP) resolved earlier today that they would re-elect him to the top post in case of the expected adverse verdict by the court.

The nine-judge Constitution Court ruled unanimously that Mr Samak's continued hosting of two cooking shows on a commercial TV channel for a monetary consideration even after his election as prime minister was a violation of the constitution.

First deputy prime minister Somchai Wongsawat will be the caretaker prime minister till a new one is chosen by the ruling coalition headed by the PPP.

The PPP said it would ask coalition partners to put Mr Samak back in office.

The Constitution Court's ruling adds to the prevailing political uncertainty in Bangkok with anti-government protestors under the banner of the influential civil society campaing People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) forcibly occupying the premises of the Prime Minister's Office in defiance of a state of emergency in the capital.

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