PM uses Article 44 powers to sack Surachate

PHOTO: Spring News

Thai media is reporting that the PM Prayut Chan-ocha used his Article 44 powers to remove Lt-Gen Surachate Hakparn from his job as Immigration chief and side-line him to office duties, pending an enquiry.

Following Friday night’s transfer of the Immigration chief it has now been announced that PM Prayut placed the Lt-Gen on a list of public servants under investigation using his sweeping powers under Article 44 of the Thai Charter.

Daily News reports that he’s been removed from all duties. Surachate, AKA ‘Big Joke’, is now just one of many ‘special advisers’ in the PM’s office. Daily News reports that the situation is a temporary post while a full investigation takes place.

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The announcement appeared in the government gazette today but we still don’t know exactly what the former head of immigration is being investigated for.

Spring News published a leaked picture of Big Joke sitting at the back of a meeting chaired by Gen Chalermkiat Srivorakan. He was on the phone and left quietly after the meeting without speaking to anyone.

It’s a far cry from his days front and centre with almost daily media briefings as he swept across the country investigating and arresting ‘baddies’ in his “Good guys in, bad guys out” campaign.

Thai Rath has reported that Surachate is now stripped of all his special duties, responsibilities and salaries and was now just a common civil servant working in the PM’s office.

SOURCE: Thai Visa

Bangkok News

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