Senators Reject Chalerm's Idea of Arming Kamnans in South
The Senate meeting yesterday objected to Deputy Prime Minister Chalerm Yoobamrung's idea of arming kamnan and village headmen in the three southernmost provinces with machine guns.Senators said the negative outcome of such a move would be more than any positive result.
Objecting to Chalerm's proposal, Senator Weerawit Khongsak said such highly destructive weapons should be given to officials well-trained and well-disciplined in shooting so as to prevent harm to innocent people out of misunderstanding. He said that as many officials' weapons were stolen and had gone missing, introducing more high-powered weapons in the region could aggravate the unrest. He said the government should work on limiting the number of war weapons in the region rather than increasing them.
Meanwhile, as Yala officials' investigations leaned towards a conclusion that RKK insurgents led by Usman Dorkhor had carried out the CCTV camera arson in Muang Yala on January 19, Army chief Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha urged for the CCTV systems to be integrated. A police investigation into the arson that destroyed 97 CCTV cameras in Yala's seven districts on January 14 was still ongoing,
Commenting on related agencies installing CCTV cameras in the region, Prayuth said it should be more united and systematic, and arranged into three zones based on risk level; the high-risk areas should have many more cameras and there should be people guarding them. He also expressed the view that insurgents were responsible for the camera arson, in an attempt to tamper with evidence of their crimes.
Meanwhile, Education permanent secretary Panita Kamphu na Ayutthaya yesterday held a meeting with teachers and school executives in the five southern border provinces to push for protection to teachers round the clock and install CCTV in risky areas by fiscal year 2013.