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Somkiat Pongpaiboon dies at 71

Somkiat Pongpaiboon, a co-leader of the now-defunct People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD), died from a brain hemorrhage at Maharat Nakhon Ratchasima Hospital on Sunday after a month of treatment. He was 71.

The news of his death was posted on Facebook by Suriyasai Katasila, the former PAD coordinator and spokesman.

“R.I.P. I was informed by Pi Noy, Somkiat’s wife, at 11.10am that he died just a while ago at Maharat Nakhon Ratchasima Hospital.

“May you have a good rest – after having sacrificed for the public, the poor and the underprivileged as well as for social justice throughout your life.

“I am glad to have gone through the bad and good times with you. I have faith in your every opinion and deed. May your soul be at peace.”

Somkiat’s death came about one month after he was admitted to Maharat Nakhon Ratchasima Hospital Oct 15 by his wife, Wanlapa, after an acute headache.

He was later transferred to the Bangkok-Nakhon Ratchasima Hospital where he underwent a CT scan and was diagnosed with a brain hemorrhage.

He lost consciousness but still had vital signs.

Somkiat was later moved back to Maharat Nakhon Ratchasima Hospital where he stayed on life support until he was pronounced dead on Sunday.

Born on Jan 12, 1950 in Dan Khun Thot district, Nakhon Ratchasima province, Somkiat received a bachelor’s degree in education, majoring in Thai language-history, from Srinakharinwirot University and a master’s degree in education from Khon Kaen University.

He was a lecturer at Nakhon Ratchasima Rajabhat University and a party-list MP of the Democrat Party from 2007-2011.

Somkiat became a core member of the PAD in 2006, along with Sonthi Limthongkul, Somsak Kosaisuk, Maj Gen Chamlong Srimuang and Bhipop Dhongchai.

He also joined the People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) from 2013-2014.

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