Chadchart’s withdrawal from national strategy committee “unfortunate”, says Wissanu

It is unfortunate for Chadchart Suttipunt, a former transport minister, and Somchai Jitsuchon, a director for economic development research of the Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI), to have withdrawn from membership of national strategy drafting committees, Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam said on Monday (Oct 2).

Mr Wissanu said he learned of the two’s withdrawal on Oct 1, and understands their decision well.

He said it was unfortunate because the government hoped their knowledge and visions would be useful for the committees which will be responsible for drafting national strategies in various fields.

More members can still be appointed, as each committee is still short of the full membership of 15. However, he did not expect their replacements to be appointed this week.

Mr Wissanu denied a suggestion that the government had invited Mr Chadchart to sit on a committee for wanting to win cooperation from certain groups of people.

“No. It was because Mr Chadchart’s qualifications are suitable for the committee for drafting the strategy for infrastructure,” he said.

Mr Wissanu also denied as untrue a suggestion by Srisuwan Janya, secretary-general of the Assocation for the Protection of the Thai Constitution, that committee members were appointed from favouritism.

Politics is not a factor for the selection, he said.

Mr Wissanu said Mr Chadchart’s withdrawal is not a lose of face on the part of the government.

As for Mr Somchai, his withdrawal was connected to the regulation of his work place, he said.