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Prayut ready to testify in Abhisit impeachment case

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Prayut ready to testify in Abhisit impeachment case | The Thaiger

PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– Thailand news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Prayut ready to testify in Abhisit impeachment case
The Nation / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha yesterday said that he was ready to testify before the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) as defence witness for Democrat Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva in his impeachment case over alleged mishandling of the 2010 bloody crackdown.

PM Prayut was responding to Mr Abhisit’s comment to reporters on Wednesday, in which he said that Gen Prayut – who was deputy Army chief at the time – former defence minister Gen Prawit Wongsuwan and former Army chief Gen Anupong Paochinda understood the situation well. He also said their testimony would be useful, but he was not certain if they were prepared to be his witnesses.

PM Prayut said he might only submit a written testimony.

The NACC on Tuesday resolved to push for the impeachment of former PM Abhisit and his then-deputy Suthep Thaugsuban, citing that the two did not review or adjust tactics used by military personnel to disperse demonstrators, which led to many deaths and left many injured.

PM Prayut hinted that Mr Abhisit could escape impeachment if he could prove that there were armed men among the protesters.

“May I ask if there were armed men among the people. Yes or no? Were there ‘men in black’ among the red shirts? And was there someone firing at soldiers? If there were, then it is over,” he said.

He made the remark after reporters asked if he believed this case would put the Army in the hot seat, as Mr Abhisit had named the three top military men Gen Prayut, Gen Anupong and Gen Prawit in his case.

The Democrat leader had said his government would have been charged with dereliction of duty if did nothing at a time when some protesters were resorting to heavy arms.

Asked if the NACC probe against Mr Abhisit and Mr Suthep would help clear allegations that the government was “hunting down” only one political camp, PM Prayut rejected the allegation.

“It is not a one-sided hunt as alleged. Who are accused of wrongdoings? Those who can clear allegations against them, they are acquitted,” he said.

NACC secretary-general Sansern Poljiak said the agency had yet to send a formal writ to Mr Abhisit and Mr Suthep as it was still awaiting endorsement of the impeachment resolution by all NACC members.

Once the two receive the writ, they have to submit a defence statement or defend themselves before the NACC within 15 days. He said both were ready to address the allegations against them.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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Business

Singha grabs a 90% stake in Thailand’s Santa Fe restaurant chain

May Taylor

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Singha grabs a 90% stake in Thailand’s Santa Fe restaurant chain | The Thaiger

(…or is that a 90% ‘steak’?)

PHOTOS: Wongnai

DealStreetAsia, an investor news site reporting on Asian business, confirms that Singha Corporation has purchased a majority stake in the Thai restaurant chain, Santa Fe. It’s understood that Singha purchased the shares held by Lakeshore Capital for approximately US$50 million or 1.53 billion baht, giving it a 90% stake in the chain seen in most Thai shopping centres.

The Nation reports that Singha will now oversee over 110 restaurants across Thailand in one of the country’s biggest food industry deals of the year. The company first turned its attention to the food industry two years ago, launching Food Factors Company under the Boon Rawd Brewery group.

WongnaiFood Factors aims to make 5 billion baht over 3 years under the stewardship of Piti Bhirombhakdi. The company has an ambitious long-term target of 10 billion baht a year, along with plans to be listed on the stock exchange.

The Santa Fe chain was established in 2003 by Surachai Charn-Anudet’s KT Restaurant Company, with the aim of becoming a major competitor to Sizzler, the American chain brought to Thailand by Minor Food.

SOURCE: The Nation

Singha grabs a 90% stake in Thailand's Santa Fe restaurant chain | News by The Thaiger

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Economy

TAT says ‘all go’ for tourism discount campaign

Greeley Pulitzer

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TAT says ‘all go’ for tourism discount campaign | The Thaiger

PHOTO: Thailand Shopping and Dining Paradise

The Tourism Authority of Thailand’s governor says that the TAT will introduce two domestic tourism promotional measures – a 100 baht nationwide tourism campaign, and “shocking-price weekday” discounts.

The 100 baht campaign will offer some 40,000 products and services at only 100 baht each. Registration is required and will be open on November 11-12 and December 11-12, 2019, for up to 10,000 people each day on the the TAT website, starting at midnight each day.

The weekday discount campaign, valid Mondays to Thursdays will run from November 1 until December 3, offering up to 70% discounts on selected tourism products. The TAT will open an online store offering the same discounts. Eligible purchases made with the government’s wallet app will also receive a 15% VAT rebate.

The TAT says they are now ensuring the readiness of the system to accommodate registrations, after issues found during the previous ‘Chim Shop Chai’ campaign for Thais in a recent successful economic stimulus package from the government. In that campaign the government handed out 1000 baht gift to Thais with the stipulation it had to be spent in another province. 12 million Thais registered for the program.

The governor says he is confident these measures will provide an ongoing economic boost following the success of the Chim Shop Chai campaign, spiking revenue 10-20% during the campaign.

SOURCE: National News Bureau of Thailand

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Road deaths

Thailand road toll: 554 dead this month, 11,462 this year

The Thaiger

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Thailand road toll: 554 dead this month, 11,462 this year | The Thaiger

PHOTO: U-Turn crash in Bangkok – Daily News

Daily news reports fatalities at the scene of accidents yesterday claimed the lives of 21 people. Yesterday was a busy day on Thailand’s roads at the end of a long weekend.

They say the numbers reported are only those that die at the scene. In reality, when hospital deaths and all regions report their stats, the figures end up much higher.

So far this October 554 have died at the scene of accidents resulting in a yearly total nationwide of 11,462. Thailand is recognised by the World Health Organisation as the fifth highest road toll in the world, per capita.

Figures are reported daily by Daily News who highlight the need to be vigilant at U-turns in their story about this air-conditioned bus (above)on Route 29 that collided with the back of a container truck.

Seven passengers on the bus were injured in the accident on Pahonyothin Road near the Kesri 5 housing estate in Klong 1, Klong Luang district north of Bangkok. The truck driver was trying to execute a U-turn at the time.

SOURCE: Daily News | ThaiVisa

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