PM fires lottery board

Thailand’s Government Lottery Office board, chaired by Army Commander-in-Chief General Apirat Kongsompong, has been removed by an executive order issued by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha in his capacity as head of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO).

The same executive order, which was issued on Wednesday to take immediate effect, appointed Mr. Patchara Anantasilp, director-general of the Excise Department, as the new board chairman.

Three other people were also appointed to the new board,namely Associate Professor Thanawat Pholwichai, General Sakda Niamkham and Pol Lt-Gen Suwat Jaengyodsook.

Mr. Patchara, Thanawat and Pol Lt-Gen Suwat were members of the former board.

No reason was given for the replacement of the GLO board, but it is believed it might stem from the GLO’s failure to resolve the problem of lottery over-pricing.

The old board introduced two-ticket lottery sets to solve the problem of over-pricing of tickets sold in sets of 2 up to a maximum of 15 tickets at 100 baht a ticket, or more if the numbers are considered lucky.

During the initial period of the NCPO, General Apirat was assigned to crack down on lottery overpricing.  Under his leadership the crackdown was a success, with vendors selling lottery tickets at the set price of 80 baht per ticket and several lottery wholesalers, who had been awarded substantial lottery quotas, were replaced.

The same problem of overpriced tickets in sets, however, re-surfaced after General Apirat was appointed the army chief.


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