Former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra told a group of rice farmers in Ubon Ratchathani that, if her Pheu Thai party ever has another chance to be in the government, it would push up the price of paddy to help farmers.
Ms Yingluck who was on an inspection trip to the northeastern province of Ubon Ratchathani visited a group of farmers from various districts who were milling Hom Mali paddy for sale in front of a municipal school in Muang district.
She talked with the farmers and asked them about the price of paddy. They said they decided to mill the paddy themselves rather than selling the grains to the millers who often took advantage on them by suppressing the price claiming the grains have high humidity.
Upset by the millers gave them at most seven baht per kilogramme of paddy depending on the humidity of the grains, they said they decided to group together to mill their crops and sell them in the market directly to the consumers of up to 20 baht per kg of milled rice which has earned an extra 5 baht profit per kg.
Ms Yingluck then bought a small amount of rice from the farmers and gave them to members of her entourage 5 kgs each.
Reacting to the ex-prime minister’s publicity stunt, Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan said he didn’t know whether she had any ulterior motive for showing off by buying rice from farmers.
He urged to help farmers in general and not just a small amount of rice from farmers in Ubon Ratchathani.