In an update to an earlier post on the car bombing and fire, PPT mentioned that a report mentioned the fire that broke out at Surat Thani Cooperative Store. Police had said that the store belonged to Suthep Thaugsuban, former deputy chairman of Democrat Party and leader of the anti-democratic street protests that led to the 2014 coup.
We added that the idea of a cooperative being owned by Suthep seemed odd – we might have added that Suthep is currently a monk but our main issue was that cooperatives are usually owned by members, not by a single person.
Quite by chance, as PPT searched for something else in our newspaper archives, we came across a report on what seems to be the very same cooperative in the Bangkok Post from 20 December 2000. We thought readers would find it interesting, so we have clipped it. We do not know the outcome of the Audit Commission’s demand for action from the then Democrat Party government, but it does seem – at least from the fire stories – that Suthep maintained control: