Prayut warns 'ineligible' will have aid money confiscated

Prayut warns 'ineligible' will have aid money confiscated

Prayut: 'Don't deprive needy'
Prayut: 'Don't deprive needy'

The authorities will take money back from people who are not eligible but have registered for the 5,000-baht financial aid granted by the government to ease the impact of Covid-19, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha warned on Tuesday.

Gen Prayut told media that he has instructed the Finance Ministry to explain to the public who exactly is entitled to the aid and how they can protect their right to the assistance.

Despite an intensive public-awareness campaign, the premier said many ineligible people have still taken the chance and registered for the aid.

"About 20 million people have registered for the assistance, but this does not mean they will all get the money," he said.

Artificial intelligence will be used to analyse and screen people to see who meets the criteria set by the Finance Ministry, and money will only be handed over once the information is verified, Gen Prayut warned.

Those who are not eligible will be removed from the list, and if they happen to receive the aid, the money will be taken back, the prime minister warned.

"Don't deprive those who are really in trouble of the opportunity to access help. However, the government will come up with additional measures to help those who are not eligible for the 5,000 baht aid," Gen Prayut said.

The government has rolled out a series of stimulus packages to ease the impact of Covid-19 on workers.

Among them is a 50-billion-baht government fund that provides 5,000 baht per month for three months to 3 million affected temporary employees and self-employed workers.

Before this, a broad range of financial and fiscal-relief mea­sures was issued to help companies, especially small and medium-sized enterprises.

Deputy army chief Gen Natthaphol Nakpanich on Tuesday instructed all army units to help explain to the public who is entitled to the aid.

An army source said that more than 40 fake websites, with names similar to the official one, have been set up to lure people into registering and providing their personal and private information, which will likely be misused by those with ill intentions.

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