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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Sutha faces scrutiny over his qualifications

Education Minister Somchai Wongsawat promised further examination into the educational credentials of Social Development and Human Security Minister Sutha Chansaeng if that would clear any suspicion, said yesterday.

Published on March 20, 2008

Somchai, who is also deputy prime minister, said Sutha's educational background was checked by the Cabinet Secretariat when he was appointed to the Cabinet.

"We can do the checking again if there is any suspicion. We will make things clear and there will be no attempt to hide anything," Somchai said. He said the Education Ministry would work with the Civil Service Commission (CSC) in any further probe about Sutha's educational background.

Sutha, who insisted that he had graduated with a bachelor's degree, said that he was "glad" to be examined. "I am ready to cooperate to allow the truth to be known," he said.

The Constitution requires members of the Cabinet to have at least a bachelor's degree, compared to the 1997 charter, which also required Members of Parliament to have minimum university education.

A recent document by the Ministry of Social Development and Human Security stated that the minister graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Commerce (Management) from Republican College, Philippines, in 1984.

Sutha has never specified the information in previous official documents about his educational background.

In 1985, his campaign flyer for Bangkok's City Council election stated his maximum education as Grade 12. In his campaign flyer for last year's general election, it was specified as an Advanced Diploma and Certificate in Logistics and Transport. The CSC secretary-general, Preecha Watcharaphai, yesterday said the agency had made an initial investigation and discovered that the Republican College is an institution of higher education that is certified by the CSC.

However, the agency has not investigated whether Sutha actually graduated from the college as that would infringe on his personal right.

Hassaya Chartmontri

The Nation

My Take: Yeah! Something is not right!! Lots of discrepancies.

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