The head of Thailand’s military government has ordered his national police chief to stop talking up the prospects of casino gambling being legalised in the country, reports the Bangkok Post newspaper.
The Prime Minister, General Prayut Chan-o-cha, told Royal Thai Police chief General Somyot Poompunmuang, to stop speaking in favour of the idea, as the government had more pressing problems to consider, said the media outlet.
In June a minority group on Thailand’s National Reform Council (NRC) suggested legalising casino gaming in the country, according to The Nation newspaper.
Soon afterwards Thailand’s police chief, along with the Finance Minister, Sommai Phasee, appeared to endorse the proposal. The police boss said it would stop Thais visiting casinos in neighbouring countries and keep tax revenue from gaming in the local economy
The NRC is a 250-member body that was formed by the Thai military after the latter seized power from the caretaker government of previously democratically elected Yingluck Shinawatra in May 2014. One of the council’s jobs is to oversee the drafting of a new constitution for the southeast Asian kingdom.
The Bangkok Post said the idea of legalising casinos had been raised unsuccessfully in 2004, 2008 and again in 2011 under the respective civilian governments of Thaksin Shinawatra, Samak Sundaravej and Yingluck Shinawatra.
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