PM 'sorry' for putting tail on Yingluck
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha apologised Wednesday to ex-premier Yingluck Shinawatra, after she complained she was being followed "too closely" by plainclothes officers.
Speaking after the first cabinet meeting of the year, Gen Prayut said the officers who were following the former prime minister had been assigned to ensure her safety.
He begged her "not to complain". There must be people assigned to take care of her, he said, because if something bad happened, she would blame the government for not looking after her.
Gen Prayut said he had instructed security authorities not to take so many photographs of Ms Yingluck as they would then risk being criticised for intruding on her privacy.
"Still, officers must be assigned to take care of her. If anything happens, the government will be blamed for not looking after her. But I have told them not to take so many pictures. I want to apologise [to Ms Yingluck] for this," Gen Prayut said.
Gen Prayut's comments came after Ms Yingluck complained about being followed by plainclothes police while spending the New Year holiday with her son in Pai district of Mae Hong Son province.
"I never thought I would be so closely followed by plainclothes police and authorities, who also check on the shops and places I visit," Ms Yingluck wrote on her Facebook page on Tuesday.
"I am only a woman and a citizen taking my son to places we never visit."
"Government agencies could use their resources and personnel better by looking after the people, not following me. If all sides work without discrimination and prejudice, reconciliation, which is often being mentioned, may occur without difficulty," she wrote.
Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Prawit Wongsuwon also admitted security authorities had been sent to provide protection for Ms Yingluck.
"If anything happens, the government will be in trouble. We have no intention of keeping a close watch on what you are doing and where you are going. You are a former prime minister, so we have to take care of you," Gen Prawit said.