Panel heads get together to devise national strategy

Panel heads get together to devise national strategy

Heads and secretaries of six new national strategy drafting panels will meet this week to map out their plans, Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam says.

The members of the drafting panels have been made public after the announcement of the Prime Minister's Office concerning the establishment of the committees was published in the Royal Gazette on Thursday.

The panels, which consist of 70 members, involve national security, building competitiveness, development and potential building of human resources, creating opportunity and social equality, creating an environmentally friendly quality of life, and ensuring a balance in state sector management.

Each panel will map out the national strategy by conducting hearings from relevant parties.

They need to complete their strategy plans within 120 days or by January, Mr Wissanu said.

The national strategy plan will then be tabled to the cabinet meeting and proposed to the National Legislative Assembly for approval.

It also requires royal endorsement.

It is likely that the plan will come into force in the middle of next year, which is the starting point where relevant parties are obliged to proceed with it, Mr Wissanu said.

Each panel has five years of tenure, during which they need to follow up, oversee and advise agencies proceeding with the plan, he said.

The 20-year strategy drafters include Chadchart Sittipunt, a former transport minister in the Yingluck Shinawatra government.

Mr Wissanu said he did not know who proposed Mr Chadchart to sit in one of the panels, but the whole list of the members had been screened by the prime minister.

Those who sit in the panels have agreed to take up the position, the deputy prime minister said.

He insisted the choice of Mr Chadchart has nothing to do with the government's attempts to seek reconciliation.

He said several people sitting on the 12-member national strategy committee and the national reform panels have also caught the public by surprise.

"We do not think about which sides they belong to," Mr Wissanu said.

"We only ponder whether they have time and are capable of doing the job."

He conceded some people who were contacted to sit on the panels rejected the proposal, saying they were preoccupied with other duties.

He insisted the strategy drafters are permitted to hold other positions, such as MPs, senators and government ministers, adding they do not have to declare their assets.

Asked how the national strategy committee would follow up the agencies' pursuit of the strategy plan, Mr Wissanu said if agencies fail to comply with the plan, warnings would be given.

But if the plan is still neglected, complaints need to be lodged to their superiors.

If the cabinet is found to condone the agencies flouting the plan, the parliament will be petitioned to report their infractions to the National Anti-Corruption Commission, the deputy premier said.

Referring to various strategy drafters who are from the private sector, Mr Wissanu said this was not meant to seek funding but to gather people from a variety of backgrounds.

"These people have strategies and visions for work, which should be utilised for the country's benefit," Mr Wissanu said.

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