Yingluck takes over security matters

national November 03, 2012 00:00

By The Nation

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She is expected to continue her 'integrated way' of management; no drastic changes planned

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has decided to personally take on the challenge of security matters, especially as several men in the Cabinet have failed to handle the issue successfully. 

While allocating jobs to her new ministers after the latest Cabinet reshuffle, she said she would be overseeing all security matters that were previously under her former deputy PM Yutthasak Sasiprapha.
As per law, security matters do indeed come under the command of the PM, who is chief of the Internal Security Operation Command (Isoc) and the National Security Council.
Though many former prime ministers oversaw national security themselves, some leaders like Abhisit Vejjajiva handed the job over to a deputy. 
Similarly, Yingluck had previously put Yutthasak in charge of the issue, but now that there are no former Army generals in her Cabinet, she has decided to prove that a woman can do the job just as well. Besides, she is keeping Yutthasak as her adviser on security affairs. 
Initially, the first Deputy PM Chalerm Yoobumrung was willing to limit his role to only fighting drug trafficking and overseeing police and interior affairs, until Yingluck decided to make him the deputy director of Isoc. 
One of the most serious issues at the moment is the restive South, where people are being killed on an almost daily basis. Previously, Yutthasak led a committee to drive policy and strategy to restore peace in the region, putting all 17 related agencies under one single-operation centre. 
Now, Yingluck is in charge of the job. 
However, she is expected to oversee the South in an “integrated” manner – a term she often uses to describe her style of management. This means she will not be totally in charge but will have the job mostly done by the single-operation centre. 
Yingluck, meanwhile, has insisted that Yutthasak’s committee and the operation centre will stay the same and that all security agencies will continue their jobs as usual. 
Under the committee, Deputy PM Phongthep Thepkanjana, who is also a legal expert, will be put in charge of all justice affairs, while the Southern Border Province Administrative Centre and Chalerm will oversee development projects in the South. 
“I will be in charge of security matters via Isoc and the Defence Ministry as well as the military.
“Everything will be the same, except there will be no deputy PM to handle the job, because I will be doing it myself,” Yingluck told reporters. 
She also said that she would soon announce an adjustment of operational structure for security matters by involving more agencies, but said she would not make any drastic changes. 

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