Coup leader General Prayuth Chan-ocha has asked for public understanding over the transfers of three senior officials, saying they have done nothing wrong but the move was made for the "sake of suitability" in the current situation.
The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) on Saturday ordered the removal of national police chief General Adul Saengsingkaew, Department of Special Investigation director-general Tarit Pengdit, and Defence Ministry permanent secretary General Nipat Thonglek. They will be transferred to the PM's Office.
Army deputy spokesman Colonel Winthai Suvari quoted NCPO and Army chief Prayuth as saying the transfers did not impinge on the honour of the men or their agencies.
Deputy police chief General Watcharapol Prasarnrajkit has replaced Adul as acting police chief, the spokesman said.
"All will be done to create trust among members of society. And [Prayuth] would like the people to have sympathy for the transferred and refrain from showing contempt and hatred towards them because they are not regarded as having committed wrongdoings," Winthai said. "Please regard that their transfers have been made for the sake of suitability under the current situation. [Prayuth] would like all [people] to provide cooperation to those who become acting holders of the positions."
Watcharapol defended his decision to appoint eight new acting commissioners on Saturday, saying it was normal to rotate officials for suitability.
"Reshuffle and transfer are normal. No one has any flaw in performance,'' he said.
The eight new commissioners yesterday reported to Watcharapol, who was appointed to the top police post by the NCPO.
Watcharapol said he had not been given any special orders from the NCPO and still regarded Adul as his superior.
Former Bangkok police chief Lt-General Camronvit Toopkrajank, one of the eight officers transferred, was in a relaxed mood when he talked to reporters.
He said he only had four months left before retirement so he had never thought of resigning.