PM says no cabinet reshuffle yet

Thailand’s Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha reiterated today (Sunday) that he has no current intention of reshuffling his cabinet, following the departures of Deputy Agriculture Minister Thammanat Prompao and Deputy Labour Minister Narumon Pinyosinwat, and hopes that his deputy, Prawit Wongsuwan, will not be upset by his decision.

He said that his relationship with Prawit, one of what he calls his two “brothers in arms”, the other being Interior Minister Anupong Paochinda, will never be broken, adding that he is ready to acquaint himself with and be more receptive to MPs of the ruling Palang Pracharat and other parties.

Thammanat, also secretary-general of the party, is regarded as a protégé of General Prawit. On the day of his removal by the prime minister, Thammanat claimed his relationship with Prawit remains strong.
The prime minister also said that he will pay more visits to upcountry provinces, in an effort to reach out to the local people and to hear their problems and points of view.

The Palang Pracharat party reportedly will hold a general assembly soon, to discuss a possible revamp of its structure, amidst speculation that Interior Permanent Secretary Chatchai Promlert, who is due to retire at the end of this month, may join the party.

There is speculation that Chatchai could be named the new deputy interior minister, to fill the seat left vacant by Thammanat, adding that the “Sam Mitr” faction of the party may, again, demand the energy portfolio, in exchange for the industry post currently held by Suriya Juangroongruangkit.

Super Poll said Saturday that 98.4%, of 1,224 respondents to an opinion poll, agreed that the prime minister should revamp his cabinet and bring people who are competent and honest to join his team.

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