Following murmurings of a rift, the Thai PM has had lunch with deputy PM Prawit Wongsuwon in what may be an attempt to dispel such rumours. The Bangkok Post reports that the lunch took place yesterday, at the Five Provinces Bordering Forest Preservation Foundation. Both men had just attended a meeting at the Army Club with Interior Minister Anupong Paojinda.
Rumours of conflict between the PM and Prawit first emerged when the deputy PM stepped in to ensure Thamanat Prompow remained as secretary-general of the ruling Palang Pracharath Party. Thamanat had previously been sacked from his role as deputy agriculture minister over allegations he was involved in a plot to oust the PM.
His sacking could have led to him being removed as PPRP secretary-general were it not for Prawit’s intervention. However, that intervention subsequently led to rumours of political infighting between Prawit and the PM. Yesterday’s lunch may have been an attempt to dispel such speculation.
Prior to the lunch, both men and Anupong attended a meeting of the Internal Security Operations Command with military leaders. The meeting, which was chaired by the PM, was called to review ISOC’s performance during the last year and to confirm a plan for the coming year. The PM outlined policies for ISOC to increase its focus on regional security and threats to national security. He says the command has an important supporting role in other agencies’ efforts to solve the country’s problems, adding that the military has a duty to help with national development.
According to the Bangkok Post report, the PM says ISOC and the interior minister need to work closely to resolve the country’s problems democratically and that out-of-date regulations and laws can be changed to improve efficiency.
SOURCE: Bangkok Post
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