Yingluck denies she is taking time off work

Yingluck denies she is taking time off work

Caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra yesterday denied that she is on vacation, as has been widely reported.

She also denied that she had assigned her deputy, Phongthep Thepkanjana, to take charge of the caretaker government on her behalf.

Speaking to reporters at Chiang Mai railway station, Yingluck said she had only put Phongthep in charge of the reform talks that her administration is hosting at Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre in Bangkok tomorrow.

Inspection trip

The PM spoke to reporters before boarding a special train from Chiang Mai to Lampang to inspect the railway route following repairs. She was seen off by some 200 red shirts, who came to the station to give her moral support.

Yingluck was travelling with caretaker Deputy PM Plodprasop Suraswadi, caretaker Interior Minister Charupong Ruangsuwan, caretaker Transport Minister Chadchart Sittipunt and State Railway of Thailand Governor Prapat Chongsanguan.

The Chiang Mai-Lampang route had been closed for repairs. Services resumed on December 1.

Once on board, Yingluck discussed the current political situation, saying she agreed that political reform was needed. "Please tell me how it should be done. I see that the politics should be reformed, but how should it be done so it is acceptable by all sides? I agree with Dr Prawase Wasi, who said there is inequality in our society. We must bring about fairness in the country instead of changing the government or fighting. We must talk to one another," she said.

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