FTI chairman sacks deputies

Rifts in the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) widened Monday after the chairman sacked three deputies and four officials amid attempts to unseat him.

Payungsak Chartsutthipol, the FTI chairman, had reshuffled his team by moving out three vice-chairmen, Tanit Sorat, Thaveekit Jaturajarernkul and Suchart Visuwan, Post Today reported.

Their places have been taken by Thawee Piyapatana, Vallop Vitanakorn and Chen Namchaisiri, it added.

The reshuffle took effect from last Friday but was unveiled on Monday.

The FTI has been marred by internal conflicts as a group of members are trying to oust Mr Payungsak for "not doing enough'' to lobby the government for a delay in the daily minimum wage hike to 300 baht nationwide on Jan 1.

About 200 members of the Federation of Thai Industries hold a meeting at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre to oust their chairman. (Photo by Somchai Poomlard)

Small- and medium-sized firms, which account for 70% of the federation's members, have cried foul about the wage hike.

The disgruntled members called a meeting on Monday at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre to remove Mr Payungsak but he countered the move by ordering it to be cancelled.

The meeting room booking was withdrawn, but about 200 members still went ahead with their meeting inside the centre and without the chairman, saying Mr Payungsak had no authority to postpone it.

Mr Thaveekit strongly opposed the chairman's decision to sack his deputies, saying that he should face reality and explain his performance to members.

The chairman should not sack four officials because they were not involved in the conflict, Post Today quoted him as saying.

FTI secretary-general Sommat Khunset told FM100.5 news programme earlier that Mr Payungsak's credibility was at stake for having tried to block the meeting.

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