By Thai Newsroom Reporters
DEFENCE MINISTER SUTHIN Khlangsang has been dared to look into “secret funding” regularly provided for missions of the Internal Security Operations Command and see to it that it does not slip into the pockets of army generals.
Somchai Srisutthiyakorn posted on his Facebook page to suggest Suthin literally find out whether amounts of the ISOC’s “secret funding” might possibly be syphoned off to the pockets of generals and other army officers in charge of the army-led agency’s missions, especially those in the southernmost region.
The expenditure of “secret funding” provided for ISOC and other military missions has always remained a mystery, not only to members of the general public but lawmakers who are more or less inclined to approve it yearly without knowledge of details about it.
The Thai Liberal partisan member was apparently responding to comments earlier made by Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin that the Pheu Thai-led government has had no policy to dissolve the ISOC though legislation has been prepared by the Move Forward to terminate the agency which has been allocated a range of seven to eight billion baht in yearly funding but allegedly failed to bring peace and order to the insurgency-infested, predominantly Muslim southernmost region.
Suthin has been suggested to find out whether such a huge sum of annual funding may have been spent by the army-led ISOC in cost-effective fashion since the last decade.
“Now that you have the authority, one couldn’t help wondering if you have the courage to change anything to improve the situation which you have viewed as going from bad to worse,” Somchai said, referring to the civilian member of cabinet.
Besides, Somchai called on Suthin to look into allegations that many army officers had been reportedly transferred to ISOC units in the turbulent southernmost areas only to get promotion in rank and increased pay without having been physically embedded there.
Top: Defence Minister Suthin Khlangsang next to ISOC logo. Photo: Matichon
Insert: Somchai Srisutthiyakorn. Photo: Thai Rath
Front Page: Defence Minister Suthin Khlangsang visiting Royal Thai Armed Forces headquarters early last month.Photo: Thai Rath