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Luxury property on the hillside of Ao Sane to be partially demolished

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Luxury property on the hillside of Ao Sane to be partially demolished | The Thaiger
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The 12-meter high beach villa project on the cliff at Ao Sane has been proven to be illegal according to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment. The owners have been instructed to demolish the upper structure to meet the legal height of 6 meters. Meanwhile, Phuket’s Governor has set up a committee to investigate the Rawai Municipality who issued the building permit.

The picture of the property drew a lot of attention from Phuket locals after going viral on social media who then doubted if it was built legally as it seems to block the sea view on the route from Rawai to Ao Sane and the Laem Krating viewpoint. Governor Norapat Plodthong says that the owner of the project needs to follow the building regulations or face demolition by local authorities.

“The Land Office has confirmed that the title deed is legal. However, according to the report from the Phuket Marine Office, the project is mostly within 20 meters from the highest sea level which only allows a maximum height of 6 meters and is restricted to single story only. Some parts of the project are located further in Zone 2, which is categorised as being 50 meters away from highest sea level and would be allowed a maximum height of 12 meters if it is a single house design.”

As the entire project reaches about 12 meters in height, part of it will be required to be removed.

“Rawai Municipality is responsible for suspending the project until the owner of the project follows the building codes, especially the height of the buildings that can only be 6 meters high.”

So far, the municipality has ordered the project to be suspended and asked them to comply with the law within 30 days.

“If the project doesn’t comply and make a change to the height within 30 days, all departments concerned in the case will be subject to a lawsuit. The Rawai Municipality who issued the 30 days suspension will be authorised to demolish the construction.”

A committee is also being set up to investigate how the building was issued a permit by Rawai Municipality.

The luxury project is reported to belong to a Bangkok millionaire, Ong-art Thongpetburapa, who owns several businesses in the capital and who wanted to make his own private villa on the hills.

STORY & PHOTO: Kritsada Mueanhawong & Nattha Thepbamrung

A native from Phuket, Nattha is an experienced journalist who graduated from Journalism and Mass Communication at Thammasat University. She has acquired seven years experience as a Journalist and Content Writer for local and national newspapers and magazines, focusing on news, lifestyle and investigative articles.

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Thailand

Thailand may have to wait for US vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna

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Thailand may have to wait for US vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna | The Thaiger

As news that US may acquire its first shipment of Covid vaccines in mid-December, Thailand may have to wait to share the vaccines as they will likely be made available to the US and Japan first, before the rest of the world. Pfizer and Moderna recently announced their vaccines were about 95% effective, with some countries starting to preorder the vaccines despite shipment challenges that include maintaining a low temperature during transport.

Already, the US and Japan have preordered 300 and 120 million doses respectively, according to Kiat Ruxrungtham, the director of Covid-19 vaccine research and development project of the Faculty of Medicine at Chulalongkorn University. But Thailand may have other options as Kiat said 11 other pharmaceutical companies are developing the vaccine that could be distributed on a large scale. Out of Thailand’s 7 potential Covid-19 vaccines, 2 have successfully completed the animal testing stage and will proceed to human testing starting in April 2021.

However, Kiat says BioNet-Asia Co’s vaccine may be lagging behind due to the short supply of vaccine precursors, as many have been bought by bigger companies. He adds that a team has been testing Cu-Cov19, an mRNA vaccine, on macaques at Chulalongkorn University’s National Primate Research Centre in Saraburi with BioNet-Asia being the centre’s partner.

He said the project does not had sufficient funding from the government, but the state is finding ways to preorder vaccines from Covax, a company working with the World Health Organization and cooperating with AstraZeneca and Oxford University.

Today, Thailand’s CCSA reports 2 new imported cases of Covid, 1 of which is a 5 month old Indian baby girl, bringing the total number of cases to 3,922 with 0 new deaths. The Centre for Covid Situation Administration reported that the girl arrived on November 11 on the same flight as 2 previously confirmed cases. The baby tested positive 5 days later, while displaying symptoms such as a fever and vomitting.

 

SOURCE: The Phuket News

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Tourism

Qantas airline to require international travellers to have Covid vaccine

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Qantas airline to require international travellers to have Covid vaccine | The Thaiger

Qantas, the Australian airline, is announcing a new requirement that international travellers will need to have a vaccination against Covid-19 in a move that could become the norm for the rest of the industry. Qantas CEO Alan Joyce says the Australian flag carrier would implement the measure once a coronavirus vaccine was made available to the public.

“We are looking at changing our terms and conditions to say for international travellers that we will ask people to have a vaccination before they can get on the aircraft.”

“Whether you need that domestically, we will have to see what happens with Covid-19 in the market but certainly, for international visitors coming out (to Australia) and people leaving the country, we think that is a necessity.”

Joyce says the new rule is likely to become a standard practice by all airlines worldwide as many governments are now working to introduce electronic vaccination passports. Vaccination requirements are already widely used around the world for those wishing to enter certain countries, with many countries wanting travellers show they have been inoculated against yellow fever if they are coming from regions where that disease could be acquired.

The International Air Transport Association has also announced it is in the “final stages” of developing a digital health pass that it says can be used to record Covid-19 tests or vaccinations and will “support the safe reopening of borders,” according to the IATA director general and CEO Alexandre de Juniac.

“We are bringing this to market in the coming months to also meet the needs of the various travel bubbles and public health corridors that are starting operation.”

Australia’s borders have been closed since March to help stop the spread of the virus, which has taken the lives of more than 1 million people worldwide. The country has even limited its own citizens arrivals from abroad by implementing a weekly quota that has left thousands stranded overseas. Qantas has grounded more than 200 planes and let go 8,500 staff members as it attempts to offset a US 1.9 billion loss.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Drugs

Clash with kratom smugglers by Songhkla border leaves 1 Malaysian cop killed and 1 injured

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Clash with kratom smugglers by Songhkla border leaves 1 Malaysian cop killed and 1 injured | The Thaiger

A clash with kratom drug smugglers by Thailand ‘s Songhkla border has left 1 Malaysian cop killed and 1 injured. The clash happened at around 2am this mornign as a Malaysian policeman came up on 13 men acting suspiciously near the border on the Malaysian side, which is opposite of Sadao district.

Gunshots were exchanged and 2 Thai smugglers were arrested with 3 other Thais wounded. The wounded Thais attempted to cross the border but were caught and sent to Hat Yai hospital for treatment. 54 year old Baharudin bi Pramli, was shot and killed whils 39 year old Norihan A/L Tari was wounded.

The kratom smugglers were believed to be both Malaysian and Thai nationals. Kratom, is a mild narcotic, which has been categorised as an illegal drug in Thailand. 1 of the injured men was taken to the area, as police say he was well enough to identify the scene of the clash and the gang’s escape route. Across the border, Malaysian police reportedly arrested 2 Thai smugglers. One was 38 year old Sahamadyusob Talah from tambon Ban Khuan of Muang district, while the other was unnamed.

Recently, a Burmese man was busted with 20 kilograms of kratom after he illegally crossed a natural border into Thailand in the southern Muang district in Prachuap Khiri Khan. Border patrol police and administrative officials were patrolling Ban Hup Phueng, a village near the natural pass on the Myanmar border, after Thailand authorities sealed the border earlier due to an outbreak of Covid in Myanmar. Such arrests of illegal border crossing have been more prevalent in recent months as the province has stepped up surveillance of the border due to the Covid-10 pandemic.

Just last weekend, a Burmese refugee contracted Covid after sneaking across the border to visit his native country and upon coming back, he tested positive for the virus, causing officials to lockdown the refugee camp in Tak province.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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