Phuket to get new police chief in latest reshuffle

PHUKET: Phuket will get a new provincial police commander as part of a nationwide reshuffle of top provincial-level officers.

Phuket Provincial Police Deputy Commander Chalit Kaewyarat today confirmed to the Phuket Gazette the results of the reshuffle announced at a meeting of the National Police Committee at Royal Police Headquarters in Bangkok yesterday.

Deputy Prime Minister Chalerm Yoobamrung, who as Interior Minister oversees the Royal Thai Police, chaired the meeting to consider and approve the transfer of provincial police commanders and deputy commanders, Col Chalit said.

“Phuket Provincial Police Commander Chonasit Wattanavrangkul has been transferred to take up the position of Commissioner of Inspection Division 9, Office of the Inspector General, in Bangkok.

Related news

“His replacement will be current Narathiwat Provincial Police Commander Maj Gen Chote Chawanwiwat,” Col Chalit explained.

Col Chalit, a Phuket native who has also served many years as a police officer in Phuket, said he would be transferred to serve as Phang Nga Provincial Police commander.

“The order will be effective from October 1,” Col Chalit said.

As expected by many, yesterday’s gathering in Bangkok did not end without controversy. Pol Gen Achirawit Suphanphesat, who earlier criticized politicians for interfering in the reshuffle process and compromising its meritocratic component, walked out on the proceedings.

“Before the meeting started, I presented a document that included some proposed promotions that I deemed inappropriate in terms of qualifications and principles,” he said, adding that other promotions were raised in the course of the meeting with no real chance for deliberation by the board.

Gen Achirawit said he explained his concerns to the board, but that the chairman [Deputy PM Chalerm] simply carried on without even considering his opinion.

“When I realized they would not consider our view, I walked out without first informing any fellow commissioners,” he said.

“To be promoted to higher positions, a police officer must have good knowledge with outstanding work during the period they hold their positions… The reason I got upset was because there are so many police officers who did outstanding work, but did not get promoted. On the other hand, some officers that did not do much outstanding work got promoted to big positions,” said Gen Achirawit.

“For example, Chumphon Provincial Police Commander Maj Gen Somchai Aumthanom doesn’t have the same experience and performance results as Nakhon Sri Thammarat Provincial Police Commander Maj Gen Ronnaphong Saigaew, but he got promoted to be Police Region 8 Deputy Commissioner,” he noted.

“Also, Police Region 8 Deputy Commander Col Daoloy Muandej, who has done outstanding work in drug suppression and has lots of experience, did not get promoted. Instead, Phuket Provincial Police Deputy Commander Chalit Kaewyarat, who has less experience and produced less outstanding results, got promoted to the post of Phang Nga Provincial Police Commander,” Gen Achirawit said.

Deputy PM Chalerm insisted after the meeting that the entire process was both “fair and transparent”.

“No money was involved with the reshuffle list. I understand that there are people who are upset with the result; it always happens when there is a meeting like this. The result can’t please everyone, but we have considered this matter carefully,” he said.

Thai National Police chief Preophan Dhamapong said, “I am not worried about the reshuffle list. I just thought that police officers who walked out of the meeting should have listened to the explanation before walking out so that they might better understand why we made the decisions we did,” he said.

The Gazette notes that in 2003, Col Chalit was promoted from Deputy Superintendent to Superintendent of Chalong Police. He remained there until 2007, when he was promoted to Deputy Superintendent of Takuapa District Police, which also covers Khao Lak.

Last year, Col Chalit returned to Phuket, working under Maj Gen Chonasit as Deputy Superintendent of Phuket Provincial Police.

National reporting by Phuket Gazette’s Thai-language partner website Nation Breaking News.

— Chutharat Plerin

Phuket News

Thaiger Talk

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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

Related Articles

Leave a Reply