The Nation



Yingluck denies she's taking leave

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra on Friday denied that she is taking leave, as widely reported in the press.

The prime minister also denied that she had assigned Deputy Prime Minister Phongthep Thepkanjana to take charge of the caretaker government on her behalf.

Speaking to reporters at the Chiang Mai railway station, Yingluck said she only assigned Phongthep to take charge of the reform talks that the government is holding at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre on Sunday.

She talked to reporters before taking a special train from Chiang Mai to Lampang to inspect the northern railway route following repairs.

About 200 red shirts waited to give her moral support as she arrived at the railway station.

Yingluck travelled with caretaker Deputy Prime Minister Plodprasop Suraswadi, caretaker Interior Minister Charupong Ruangsuwan, caretaker Transport Minister Chadchart Sittipunt and State Railway of Thailand Governor Prapat Chongsanguan.

The northern route has been closed for repairs and services were resumed on December 1.

Once on board the train, Yingluck talked about the current political situation, saying she agreed that political reform needed to be done.

"Please tell me how it should be done. I see that the politics should be reformed. But how should it be done to win acceptance from all sides? I agree with Senior Citizen Doctor Prawase Wasi who said there is inequality in our society. We must bring about fairness in the country instead of changing the government or fighting. We must turn to talk to one another," Yingluck said.

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