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6,000 officials suspected in B142bn rice scheme loss

BANGKOK: The justice minister has received a list of 6,000 state officials suspected of malfeasance leading to losses totalling B142 billion in the Yingluck Shinawatra government’s rice-pledging scheme.

corruption, crime, politics,

Bangkok Post

Tuesday 15 November 2016, 03:12PM

Public auditors find rotting grain at a warehouse in Phitsanulok province during an survey of rice stockpiled under former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s rice-pledging scheme in 2014. Photo: Chinawat Singha
Public auditors find rotting grain at a warehouse in Phitsanulok province during an survey of rice stockpiled under former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s rice-pledging scheme in 2014. Photo: Chinawat Singha

Minister Paiboon Koomchaya said at Government House today (Nov 15) that the list came from the Prime Minister’s Office and the ministries of agriculture, commerce, finance and interior.

Of the 6,000 names, 2,000 were former ministers and members of sub-committees at executive levels, and the other 4,000 were officials at operational levels, the justice minister said.

That did not mean all of the listed people had already been found guilty, Gen Paiboon said.

Authorities would examine the details to confirm those really responsible for the loss, and how much they should pay individually to compensate the state.

He also said the Interior Ministry had yet to list business operators also responsible for the B142bn loss.

Zurich Bread

The government is demanding B178bn in compensation for the losses accumulated by Ms Yingluck’s rice-pledging scheme for the 2012-2014 crops. The former prime minister has been ordered to pay 20 per cent of the sum, or B35.7bn. The military government blames her for not stopping the scheme once it was found plagued with losses and corruption, despite being advised repeatedly to do so.

The government has said it would order the other government officials involved, and business operators, to pay the remaining 80%, totalling B142bn.

The Yingluck government’s pledging price was set at 40-50% higher than the market price in the hope that hoarding rice in massive stockpiles would push up global prices, but the scheme backfired. 

In September Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha issued an order under Section 44 of the 2014 interim constitution authorising the Legal Execution Department to seize the assets of state officials found liable to pay civil damages for the rice programme losses.

Read original story here.



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Kurt | 17 November 2016 - 13:31:16

By now there are so many thousands thai people, officials and private persons, under investigation.
It will take 10 years or more to clear all these cases.
But all thai prisons are already overcrowded, mostly with young people who used soft drugs and never harmed anyone, as these 6000 officials are suspected of.. so?

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samantha | 16 November 2016 - 17:35:53

Just the tip of the iceburg. See how many are charged and how much compo they have to pay. Doubt any will serve jail time.

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