PRIME MINISTER Prayut Chan-o-cha, who has been suspended while awaiting a court ruling on his eight-year tenure, annoyed his fan club in Ayutthaya province during a flood inspection trip earlier today (Sept. 2) by not greeting them but later sent them a basket of fruit that cheered them up, Matichon newspaper said.
Mrs. Kanlayanee Chuprang, or Aunt Ayutthaya, a political activist who earlier said she was offended because Gen. Prayut, who had visited in the province in his concurrent capacity as Defence Minister, had not greeted them not even rolling down his car window to wave to them even though they had come to encourage him.
However upon getting the basket of fruit from him and getting an explanation that he was not able to wave from his car because the window could not be lowered as it was a bullet-proof vehicle, she said she now fully understands what happened and hoped he stays the prime minister for a long time.
During the trip Prayut, who was accompanied by Deputy Defence Minister Gen. Chaicharn Changmongkol and other officials, was briefed on flood prevention measures and steps being taken to help local residents.
He also encouraged soldiers building a 2.2-metre-high, 260-metre-long flood wall and filling 6,300 sandbags.
He then visited Wat Kasattrathirat Worawiharn to pay homage to the Lord Buddha. He walked to the rear and saw that the Chao Phraya river water had risen high.
He told another group of soldiers filling sandbags there that the water situation is worrying this year because it is flowing down faster than last year with the dams already releasing 1,800 cubic metres a second and to help take care of the situation.
Upon getting into his car reporters asked him whether or not he had signed a document giving his explanation to the Constitutional Court that is to rule on his eight-year tenure, and he replied, “Isn’t that what the news says?”
It was here that some Ayutthaya residents who support him had gathered and held up placards with messages encouraging him including “Ayutthaya loves Uncle Tu (Tu is Gen. Prayut’s nickname)” and “Uncle Tu Stay on For a Long time.”
However security personnel blocked them from meeting him which annoyed them.
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, currently suspended while the court considers his eight-year tenure, and his fan club, including Aunt Ayutthaya, who were not allowed to meet him. Photos: Matichon