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Khon Kaen sees second rally in 3 days

Jack Burton

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Khon Kaen sees second rally in 3 days | Thaiger
PHOTO: Thursday's rally in Khon Kaen - Nation Thailand

Khon Kaen, 1 of the “big 4” cities of Isaan in Thailand’s northeast, saw a brief anti-government demonstration in its central district last night, the second in 3 days. The rally at the democracy monument on Srichan road in the Khon Kaen municipal area started at around 9pm. A group of students and and supporters of the Free People group called for PM Prayut Chan-o-cha to resign and dissolve parliament, the writing of a new Constitution and an end to the state harassment of critics of the government.

Key members of the northeastern branch of the Free People group took turns delivering anti-government speeches on the stage before Suradet Kaewkalaya, a former election candidate from the Samanchon Party, read out a statement demadning an end to intimidation of the people, the government’s legal action against its critics, inequality in education, inequities in the justice process and the “plunder of natural resources”.

“We want rights and freedom and human dignity because we are not slaves. We want a democracy which belongs to the people. We want equality in education and true justice in the judicial process. We want the decentralisation of power and the right of communities to manage their own resources. We want a new democracy and society.”

The rally continued with speeches by core members of the group and live music.

The demonstration, watched by police and other authorities, wound down at around 10pm.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post | Nation Thailand

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    Toby Andrews

    Sunday, August 23, 2020 at 4:47 pm

    Good but still too polite.

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Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

Expats

Khon Kaen University terminates well-known American scholar after he allegedly participates in decentralisation workshop

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Khon Kaen University terminates well-known American scholar after he allegedly participates in decentralisation workshop | Thaiger

Khon Kaen University’s famous American scholar, David Eirich Streckfuss, is now without a work permit after his participation in a workshop that partially involved decentralisation. The university terminated his work permit after immigration police paid him a vist, in what they say, was a routine interview for visa extensions.

Streckfuss is an independent academic who oversees the Council on International Educational Exchange Khon Kaen programme at the university, which was founded in 1994. He also founded The Isaan Record during his 30 years spent in the Kingdom.

Prachatai, released the termination letter that featured the KKU Faculty of Public Health citing an “inability to perform assigned duties” as the reason for ending his contract as project director before its August 15 renewal date. Streckfuss’ contract at the Faculty of Public Health from 15 August 2020 to 15 August 2021, was cancelled on 19 March 2021, according to the university’s announcement.

The decision reportedly came after police visited the University President and Faculty Dean, after Streckfuss participated in a workshop which partly involved decentralisation. Since the cancellation of his work permit, Streckfuss has been on a 30 day visa which will expire next Monday. Now, he is working on getting a work permit with the Buffalo Birds Production Co., a company that produces documentaries and organises events where he is currently working as a coordinator. The company is a registerd company of The Isaan Record, in which he founded.

Prachatai indicated that The Isaan Record is also trying to secure a work permit for Streckfuss, as he says this is the first time that his work permit has been cancelled in this manner. He says Immigration police came to interview him and Khon Kaen University for the 3rd time on 16 April. But the Immigration Division Commander says the interview is just a standard procedure to be carried out when foreigners submit an application for a visa extension.

Streckfuss has written for the Bangkok Post and he has also been published in The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. He is also the author of Truth on Trial in Thailand: Defamation, Treason, and Lèse-Majesté, published by Routledge Press, in 2011. Streckfuss has a PhD in Southeast Asian history from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

SOURCE: Chiang Rai Times

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Transport

Brake system failure blamed for fatal incident in Khon Kaen

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Brake system failure blamed for fatal incident in Khon Kaen | Thaiger
Stock photo via Flickr

Checking your brakes regularly is something that could save you from a fatal accident, yet a lack of routine maintenance seems popular when it comes to accidents. The latest victims from a brake system failure, include 5 fatalities and 12 injuries after a bus in northeastern Thailand’s Khon Kaen province crashed.

The horrible accident happened last Tuesday at about 12:30am on Mitraphap Highway near Nong Kham in tambon Non Sombun. A double-decker bus headed towards Bangkok, erupted in flames with survivors saying a back tyre burst and caught fire. The, the fire spread to the engine area which then saw the bus burst into flames.

A Department of Land Transport accident investigation report says the brake system failed, overheated and caused the tyre to explode. Hot rubber pieces then landed on the valve of an NGV cylinder causing a gas leak.

The bus’ driver, 48 year old Patsadee Kham-on, is being charged with reckless driving causing death and injuries, for assumingly not checking the vehicle’s brakes before setting off. The Khon Kaen governor says the provincial land transport office has also fined the bus owner, 407 Pattana Tou Co, for using a sub-standard bus.

In November of last year, a cement truck driver in Banglamung, blamed faulty brakes for not being able to stop the truck, resulting in it running off the road and flipping. The 61 year old driver, luckily, made it out with only minor injuries. Sadly, this type of accident is quite common and likely will grace the news again, if routine maintenance is ignored.

According to directasia.co.th website, “Checking your brakes at least every year will give you advanced warning on brake pad breakdown. Putting off the less costly pad change can lead to much more expensive brake rotor repairs and even failure when driving. A major component in the Thai driving test is gauging how quickly you can slam on your brakes….for good reason.”

Thailand conducts routine checks on public transportation vehicles, with the news usually not being up to par with what one would expect when paying to be transported. The Department of Land Transport just 2 years ago, in one of its annual checks, revealed 1 in 7 public transport vehicles failed the inspection checks.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Transport

5 killed, including 2 children, in north east Thailand bus disaster

Tim Newton

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5 killed, including 2 children, in north east Thailand bus disaster | Thaiger
PHOTO ม้าข่าว HorseNew

5 people are dead, including 2 children, and another 12 seriously injured after a double-decker interprovincial bus caught fire near Khon Kaen. It was heading to Bangkok. The bus erupted into flames just after midnight on the Mitrapap highway. There were 33 passengers on the bus. The bus driver was also injured.

The 407 Pattana Company bus left Bung Kan province on the Laos border, near Vientiane, last night, stopping in Udon Thani before making its way to Bangkok.

Witnesses say a rear tyre burst and then caught fire just after the bus had left Khon Kaen. The fire then spread to the engine compartment in the back of the bus. The bus soon became engulfed in flames, according to the Bangkok Post. Fire units got to the burning bus soon after but it took an hour to extinguish the flames.

12 people suffered serious burn injuries whilst 16 others were able to get out of the bus before it was engulfed in flames.

Police have spoken to the bus driver and will continue with their investigation.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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