Sunday, April 05, 2020

No virus cover-up, premier tweets

Feb 20. 2020
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha (Photo Credit: Royal Thai Government website)
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha (Photo Credit: Royal Thai Government website)
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By The Nation

Evidently in a mood to condemn “fake news”, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha went on Twitter on Thursday (February 20) insisting there’s no Covid-19 cover-up going on in Thailand.

The government was neither hiding nor distorting the number of infections found here and citizens should gain confidence in its remarkable success in managing the disease thus far, he tweeted.

Several other countries have expressed admiration for Thailand’s ability to stem the virus’ spread, but even foreign experts on disease control have signalled doubt over the relatively small numbers of confirmed and suspected cases officially reported.

Prayut had earlier in the day urged the public to stay calm and not share “fake news or hate speech” about the virus threat, “because everyone, especially medical personnel, will be working on it until the crisis has passed”.

“The situation in Thailand today is still in a range we can cope with,” he said. “And the government will take care of all affected sectors of society.”

Prayut emerged from an afternoon meeting at Government House on the virus issue, saying the Cabinet would soon announce measures to support entrepreneurs who have been affected by the outbreak centred in China.

“The measures already taken have been able to control the situation effectively, but we plan to introduce more to help society cope and more again if the outbreak evolves to the next level,” he said.

“Meanwhile it’s important to shore up the production and distribution of protective facemasks, which is still falling short.”

Businesspeople in tourism and industry stung by the virus can count on state assistance, Prayut said. “The virus has had an impact on all businesses, so we must resolve the problem in a comprehensive way. I thank all government agencies for their cooperation in helping solve these problems.”

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