Army 'maid' work a popular job, army chief says.

Army 'maid' work a popular job, army chief says.

Outgoing army chief Udomdej Sitabutr says there is nothing wrong with using young soldiers to do domestic chores in officers homes. It's a voluntary job and a popular one too.

Please join us on our Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/bangkokpostlearning

Conscripts doing domestic jobs in officers' homes should not be called servants, outgoing army chief Udomdej Sitabutr says. THANARAK KHUNTON

Udomdej defends troop 'maid' work 

WASSANA NANUAM

Domestic work at military bosses' homes is a voluntary job many conscripts prefer to do as they get better treatment from their masters, says Deputy Defence Minister Udomdej Sitabutr.

He was downplaying criticism on social media over exploitation of conscripts by military officers after a conscript complained of abuse by his boss.

News websites and social media have been awash with criticism over the use of conscripts at military officers' homes after a seaman, who claims his naval employer chained him to a tyre, filed a complaint at Government House last week.

The seaman conscript, Anek Polthongwijit, alleged Rear Admiral Benjaporn Bawornsuwan in Nakhon Pathom chained him up as punishment after he failed to perform tasks to his satisfaction. The rear admiral denied the allegation. The navy is looking into the complaints.

Offering a general defence of the way conscripts are treated, Gen Udomdej, also outgoing army chief, said the jobs are popular with conscripts who compete to serve at the homes of senior military officers, as they can skip arduous exercise drills at the barracks.  

"Please don't call them servants. They are serving privates who are supposed to be looking after their commanders. Their living conditions differ from those of their colleagues, as their bosses take care of them," said Gen Udomdej, who retires at the end of next month.

The rear admiral wrote a letter to the navy chief denying the claims and accusing the seaman of misconduct, including an inability to sing the national anthem and masturbating in front of his wife.

Gen Udomdej said "serving privates" were in a minority compared to most conscripts trained in the barracks.

"They are treated well with good welfare. They don't need to spend their own earnings. They learn a lot by living with their seniors. Many of these experiences will benefit them after they complete their conscription," he said.

Learn from listening

Click play to listen to audio for this story, or download to save the file
: :

Vocabulary

  • abuse: cruel, violent tor unfair treatment, especially of someone who does not have the power to prevent it -
  • accuse: to say that someone has done something wrong or committed a crime - กล่าวหา
  • allegation: an accusation; a statement that someone has done something wrong or illegal even though this has not been proved - ข้อกล่าวหา
  • allege: to say that something is true or that someone has done something wrong, even though this has not been proved - อ้าง, กล่าวหา
  • arduous: involving a lot of effort and energy, especially over a period of time - ยากลำบาก, ยากเข็ญ, หนักหน่วง
  • awash: covered with water - จุ่มอยู่ใต้น้ำ
  • barracks: a group of buildings where members of the armed forces live and work - โรงหรืออาคารใหญ่เป็นที่พักทหาร
  • benefit: to give an advantage to someone - มีประโยชน์ต่อ
  • chain: to fasten something with a chain; to fasten somebody/something to another person or thing with a chain, so that they do not escape or get stolen - กักตัว, กักขัง, คุมตัว
  • chief: a person with a high rank or the highest rank in a company or an organisation - หัวหน้า, ผู้นำ
  • claim (noun): saying that something is true although it has not been proved and other people may not believe it - ข้ออ้าง ข้อกล่าวหา
  • colleague (noun): someone who works in the same organisation or department as you do or someone you know who has the same type of job - เพื่อนร่วมงาน
  • commander: the head of an army or army unit - ผู้บังคับบัญชา
  • complain: to say that you are annoyed, unhappy or not satisfied about somebody/something - บ่น, ร้องทุกข์
  • complaint: when someone says that something is wrong or not satisfactory - การร้องเรียน
  • conditions: the circumstances or situation in which people live, work or do things - เหตุการณ์, สภาพการ, สถานการณ์
  • conscript: someone who has been made to join the armed forces - ผู้ที่ถูกเกณฑ์ทหาร
  • conscription: the practice of ordering people by law to serve in the armed forces - การเกณฑ์ทหาร, การตรวจเลือกทหารกองเกิน
  • criticism: comments that show that you think something is wrong or bad - การวิจารณ์
  • defence: something you say to support someone or something that is being criticised or charged - การปกป้อง การแก้ต่าง
  • Defence Minister: the person in the cabinet in charge of the Ministry of Defence which oversees the armed forces - รัฐมนตรีว่าการกระทรวงกลาโหม
  • denied (verb): said that something is not true or did not happen - ปฏิเสธ
  • deputy: a person whose rank is immediately below that of the leader of an organisation - รอง
  • domestic: connected with the home or family - เกี่ยวกับบ้าน, เกี่ยวกับครอบครัว
  • downplay: to make something seem less important or less bad than it really is - แสดงหรืออธิบายถึงสิ่งใดสิ่งหนึ่งโดยแสร้งว่าไม่สำคัญหรือไม่แย่นัก
  • drill: an activity which practises a particular skill and often involves repeating the same thing several times - การฝึกหัด
  • employer: a person, company, or organisation that pays someone to work for them as a member of their staff - นายจ้าง
  • exploitation: unfair treatment of someone, or the use of a situation in a way that is wrong - การใช้หาประโยชน์อย่างไม่ถูกต้อง
  • file: to take official action like making a complaint - ยื่น, ยื่นคำร้อง
  • general: for most cases and situations - โดยทั่วไป, โดยปกติ, ส่วนมาก
  • inability: being unable to do something - การขาดความสามารถ, การไร้ความสามารถ
  • look after: to take care of someone or something - ดูแล
  • master (noun): a man who has people working for him, often as servants in his home - เจ้านาย
  • masturbate (verb): to give yourself sexual pleasure by rubbing your sexual organs - ช่วยตัวเอง
  • minority: involving less than half of a group - เสียงส่วนน้อย
  • misconduct: unacceptable or bad behaviour by someone in a position of authority or responsibility - การประพฤติผิด
  • national anthem: the official national song of a country - เพลงชาติ
  • naval (adj): connected with the navy of a country - เกี่ยวกับกองทัพเรือ
  • outgoing: leaving the position of responsibility mentioned - ที่พ้นจากงานหรือความรับผิดชอบ
  • popular (adj): a situation in which someone or something is liked by many people - เป็นที่นิยม, เป็นที่ชื่นชอบ
  • prefer: to like or want more than anyone or anything else - ชอบมากกว่า
  • private: the lowest rank of soldier in the army - พลทหาร
  • rear admiral: an officer of very high rank in the navy - นายทหารเรือยศพลเรือตรี
  • retire: to stop working because you have reached the age where you are officially too old to work - เกษียณอายุ
  • satisfaction (noun): a feeling that you are pleased and satisfied - ความพอใจ
  • senior: with a high rank or position - อาวุโส
  • servant: a person who works in another person's house, and cooks, cleans, etc. for them - คนรับใช้
  • skip: to not do something that you usually do or that you should do; to avoid - ไม่เข้าร่วม, ขาด
  • social media: the use of web-based and mobile technologies to turn communication into an interactive dialogue, e.g., Facebook, Twitter, etc. - เครือข่ายสังคมออนไลน์
  • task: something that you have to do, often something that is difficult or unpleasant - ภารกิจ
  • treat: to behave in a particular way towards somebody/something - ปฏิบัติ(ต่อ)
  • treatment: a way of behaving towards or dealing with a person or thing - การปฏิบัติ
  • voluntary: an action that is done because you choose to do it and not because you have to - ด้วยความสมัครใจ
  • welfare (noun): good care and living conditions - ความสะดวกสบาย, ความมีสุขภาพดี, สวัสดิภาพ

Do you like the content of this article?
COMMENT (4)