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PM thanks coal-fired power plant protesters for ending their protest

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha thanked the Songkhla-Pattani network against coal-fired power plant for their decision to end the protest in front of the United Nations Building on Ratchadamnoen road.

Gen Prayut assured that the Energy Ministry, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and security agencies would consider their demands as he pleaded with them not to expand the conflict and to take into consideration about Thailand's power security.

He stressed that the government needs to increase electricity production in the South to prevent shortage in the future, noting that it takes years to build a power plant.

In the short-term, the prime minister said that upgrading transmission lines from existing power plants could resolve power shortage problem but at the expense of increasing production cost and would affect all consumers.

However, he noted that if the government invests in building a power plant, it would help save cost in upgrading transmission lines.

The prime minister also reminded other groups of protesters of the need to be mutually reasonable and open-minded, to obey the law and not to cause any more troubles.

He warned protesters of government projects against violating the laws and stressed that a recent Administrative Court's injunction order instructing police to protect people's activity involved only on one group.

Gen Prayut was referring to the Central Administrative Court's injunction on the People GO Network's We Walk for Friendship long-march activity which ended on Feb 17.

Besides the Songkhla-Pattani network of residents, other activist groups which engaged in political activities in defiance of the junta in the past two months included the People Go Network and the pro-election movement which has vowed to hold public gatherings in March and May to demand early election.

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (ThaiPBS)