What goes up must come down: such is the law of political gravity. For a while the Governor of Bangkok, Chadchart Sittipunt, looked like he was an all-conquering colossus who bestrode the political landscape with rockstar popularity and an electoral mandate difficult to rival. Scarcely five months after he was elected in a landslide, however, the governor’s honeymoon period seems over.
That the issues he faces would occur under just about any governor is an obvious point, and having only spent a few months in office, he can only have done so much. Bangkok’s flooding is, after all, a perennial problem. But it is also true that the monsoon season has paralyzed the capital in a manner embarrassing for the governor.
His supporters argue that solutions like dredging the canals had to be done long before the rains started under the previous governor. Yet political perceptions defy rational logic; the electorate cannot help but wonder whether the new governor who promised a fresh style of governance can only bring more of the same.