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Thai caretaker PM denies negligence of duty charges

English.news.cn   2014-02-20 21:15:44

BANGKOK, Feb. 20 (Xinhua) -- Thai caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra on Thursday denied charges the National Anti- Corruption Commission (NACC) has pressed against her for alleged negligence of duty in the rice-pledging scheme.

"I wish to assure you that as I have served my duty with righteousness and contrary to the charges brought against me by the NACC, I have done nothing wrong," Yingluck said in a statement posted on her Facebook account.

The NACC announced the charges against Yingluck on Tuesday and summoned her to acknowledge the charges on Feb. 27.

In her defense, Yingluck said that her work as prime minister and also as chairperson of the National Rice Policy Committee is " done at the policy level," and has not been involved at the operational level.

But she added she would still "lend full cooperation and give necessary information" to the NACC although she might be charged in the case and give up her post as the prime minister.

Yingluck urged the NACC to listen to all accounts of the witnesses before delivering a verdict and "prove to the public that it has used its power righteously, in accordance with the principles of the rule of law as stated under the constitution."

In addition, Yingluck reiterated the rice-pledging scheme would benefit farmers by raising their living standards.

The Yingluck government started buying rice from farmers at above-market prices in 2011 to shore up rural incomes, fulfilling a campaign pledge by the Pheu Thai Party, which won a parliamentary majority that year.

Currently, the caretaker government owes about 130 billion baht (4 billion U.S. dollars) to around 1 million farmers nationwide. It has been struggling to seek funds to repay the farmers, many of whom have started rallying against the government in Bangkok.

Editor: Yang Yi
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