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Sukhumbhand ends quarrel by meeting minister

Oct 12. 2012
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By Pimnara Pradubwit
The Nation

Governor says reasons for blocking pipes explained to Plodprasob

Bangkok Governor MR Sukhumbhand Paribatra met Water and Flood Management Commission (WFMC) chairman and Science Minister Plodprasob Surassawadee yesterday to put an end to the row between the city administration and the government over sandbags placed in the capital’s drainage system. 

“I would like to thank him for agreeing to meet me,” Sukhumbhand said with a smile. 
He was speaking to the media after holding a one-on-one meeting with Plodprasob for about 10 minutes at the Office of the National Water and Flood Management Policy.
The WFMC and Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) have been attacking each other over sandbags that were recently found inside drainage pipes on Bangkok’s Srinakarin Road. Both sides also threatened to take legal action against each other after a Pheu Thai MP removed the sandbags. 
While the BMA insisted that the sandbags had been put there to prevent flooding in low-lying portions of the road, Plodprasob voiced suspicion that the BMA was trying to ruin the central government’s flood-prevention efforts.
However, Sukhumbhand said yesterday the misunderstanding had been cleared up. 
“I have already explained the water-drainage techniques [to Plodprasob],” the governor said. He added that the BMA would remove the sandbags when the wet season ends.
He added that he did not have any conflicts with his long-time acquaintance, Plodprasob. 
He added that the BMA was not locking horns with the government because many BMA representatives also sat on the WFMC board. 
“It’s just that we fight sometimes when we work together. That’s quite common, but we need to clear any misunderstandings and work together for the benefit of people,” Sukhumbhand said. 
Speaking separately, Plodprasob said the WFMC was not politicking when it criticised the BMA for stuffing drainage pipes with sandbags.
“I have now told the BMA to explain its water-management plan to the WFMC,” he said. 

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