Former Bangkok Post Editor, political commentator and a regular columnist at Post Publishing.
After six years in office and having earned the unenviable reputation of being an "angry pot" for his occasionally unprovoked outbursts at Government House reporters, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha might have thought it was about time for him to change tack and reach out to media outlets that he didn't appear to admire.
Thailand appears able to contain the spread of coronavirus at home as manifested by the absence of local infection for the past three weeks, thanks to the tireless efforts of the medical personnel and the public health volunteers as well as the cooperation of the majority of the public in observing the basic health requirements of wearing a face mask in public, social distancing and regular hand cleansing.
Pressure is steadily building on Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha from rebel MPs in the ruling Palang Pracharath Party, spearheaded by the Sam Mit faction, for a cabinet reshuffle despite the prime minister having made clear that changing the cabinet is his prerogative.
When Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon told the media last week he was not ready to assume the leadership of the ruling Palang Pracharath Party (PPRP), that doesn't mean he will reject the offer in the near future. Otherwise he would have said he didn't want the job because he has been the de facto leader from the very beginning.
Despite opposition by pro-democracy academics and opposition parties, the cabinet is likely to endorse the decision of the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) to extend the state of emergency for another month until the end of June at its meeting tomorrow.
The name "Taiwan" seems to be a taboo in Thailand, particularly in officialdom. From the prime minister at the top down to the lowest ranking officials, scarcely any of them mention Taiwan or Taiwan's extraordinary success story in containing Covid-19 as early as March, without resorting to all the lockdown measures being adopted by most countries -- including Thailand -- as they struggle to prevent the spread of the contagion.