THE PAVILIONS PHUKET BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET Kata Rocks
Login | Create Account Poll Currency Weather Facebook Youtube Search

Phuket Opinion: Fighting graft – a mission impossible

PHUKET: We’ve heard it repeated again and again at local and national levels, but all attempts to put a halt to government graft appears to be getting nowhere. Take the recent story involving a 23-year-old intern who exposed irregularities at the Khon Kaen Protection for the Destitute.

crimecorruptionculture
By The Phuket News

Sunday 4 March 2018, 09:00AM


Panida Yotpanya, a Mahasarakham University student, is protected by soldiers after exposing the alleged corruption at the Khon Kaen Protection for the Destitute where she interned last year. Photo: Jakkrapan Nathanri / Bangkok Post

Panida Yotpanya, a Mahasarakham University student, is protected by soldiers after exposing the alleged corruption at the Khon Kaen Protection for the Destitute where she interned last year. Photo: Jakkrapan Nathanri / Bangkok Post

But not only did Panida Yotpanya expose the irregularities, she was, as an intern in the government agency, asked, or should we say told, albeit unknown to her at the time, to be part of the act.

According to Ms Panida, who is a fourth-year community development major, the internship program at the Khon Kaen Protection for the Destitute – an agency that helps the underprivileged and HIV patients under the supervision of the ministry – was supposed to be simple. Based on stories from her seniors at Maha Sarakham University, she was to go on field trips with the centre’s staff to meet people in need, gather information and write up a report.

What her job actually entailed was copying information from photos of ID cards from dozens of villagers onto official forms and she, along with three other interns, were asked to sign those documents on their behalf. What Ms Panida discovered, and later revealed to the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), was that what she was asked to do was in fact forgery and illegal.

“And if these papers are used in illegal activity, it’s us who would end up in jail because we signed the papers,” Ms Panida told the media.

BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET

After bringing the matter to the attention of their parents and the department instructors, the centre’s staff were asked about what happened, they denied anything illegal was going on at the centre and believed it was a  misunderstanding. To that, Ms Panida and the others were told to beg forgiveness and were forced to kneel and apologise.

Ms Panida now asks herself what she did wrong. She brought the issue to the instructors hoping it would be dealt with. It turned out it was a case of misunderstanding. It was after this forced apology that Ms Panida and her parents took the matter to the NCPO and the army’s complaint centres.

To think that the younger generation are not only exposed to graft while on internships within government agencies, but also told to be part of it, beggars belief. And this one case just goes to show that fighting graft in government agencies really is an impossible mission.

 

 

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.

Comments Here:
Comments Left:
# Characters
Username:
Password:
E-mail:
Security:

Be the first to comment.

Have a news tip-off? Click here

 

Phuket community
Over 1,000 arrested in Phuket ‘Operation X-Ray Outlaw Foreigner’ clampdown

I think Phuket would be a better, safer place if the government applied as many resources to crack d...(Read More)


Fishing the exotic

Dragging an animal around via a steel hook in its mouth, until it dies, or is put thru huge distress...(Read More)


VIDEO: An Inside Look at the Phuket Vegetarian Festival

"Unfortunately there are some that still don't have a clue," true, and it's you....(Read More)


Phuket Vegetarian Festival takes to the streets

"Well you did actually, that's because you have no idea of what the piercing signifies,&quo...(Read More)


Chinese tourist volume continues dip, but FITs rise

Devaluate the Baht and clean up the tourist destinations and western tourists will come back....(Read More)


Phuket rubbish collector killed in road accident

"still doesn't make any sense" and therefore lies the problem, you just don't, can...(Read More)


One dead in ‘Phoenix’ salvage operation

"There is no need for idiots on here to surmise what occured," and you keep commenting... ...(Read More)


Chinese tourist volume continues dip, but FITs rise

In China people are waiting for 'salvage' of the Phoenix. By now, just 3.5 months talk abo...(Read More)


 

Melbourne Cup 2018