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Pick a date, any date – Thai election

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Pick a date, any date – Thai election | The Thaiger
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February 24, then March 10, then ‘sometime before May 7’, now March 24. The only thing we can be reasonably sure about is that it will be on a Sunday (Thai elections are always held on Sundays).

Yesterday, Deputy PM Wissanu Krea-ngam hinted that the election could now be held on March 24.

He painted March 24 as the “most suitable date” for the election as it would give political parties ample time to campaign and would not overlap with the university entrance examinations or Royal Coronation.

He said March 10, which had previously been proposed as a possible election date, wouldn’t allow political parties sufficient campaign time, while March 17 would overlap with the examinations. The annual examinations involve hundreds of thousands of students, many eligible voters.

But, throwing the ball back into the court of the Election Commission, he insists that fixing the election date is the direct responsibility of the EC. For their part, the Election Commission has flagged that it’s leaning toward March 24 as the most likely election date.

A source at the EC says they want to be on the safe side by trying to have the election results endorsed and officially announced by May 9, the deadline under the Constitution.

Thai PM Prayut Chan-o-cha has already confirmed that the election will definitely be held by May 9 but stopped short of committing to a specific date. It was the first time any actual dates were uttered by him.

In the meantime, the EC still insists that it cannot possibly fix an election date until the royal decree on MPs election is published in the Royal Gazette.

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Thailand

Thailand News Today – Thursday, April 9

The Thaiger

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Thailand News Today – Thursday, April 9 | The Thaiger

Chamber predicts 7 million Thai people to be jobless by June

7 million Thais could be on the unemployment queue by June in dire predictions from an industry chamber.

The Joint Standing Committee on Commerce, Industry and Banking have predicted that 7 million people will be joblessby June. 

The report says… “Low wage workers will be affected the most by the layoffs, an estimated of 4.2 million retail and shopping mall workers will lose their jobs, along with 1 million construction workers, 978,000 hotel workers, 250,000 restaurant workers, 200,000 spa and massage workers and 200,000 garment factory workers.”

Thailand’s labour market currently employs about 38 million workers.

Thailand confirms 54 new coronavirus cases, 2 new deaths 

54 new cases of the Covid-19 coronavirus in have been announced in Thailand today, less than half of yesterday’s 111.

The new cases bring the total number of infections in the country to 2,423. Two additional deaths were reported as an 82 year old Thai man and a Frenchman aged 74. This brings the national death total to 32.

2,423 confirmed cases including…

• 1,242 in Bangkok

• 161 in Phuket

• 142 in Nonthaburi

• 103 in Samut Prakan

• 73 in Chon Buri

Visa amnesty for foreigners – but conditions apply

The visa amnesty has been announced, hopefully relieving some of the stress on stranded tourists and other foreigners that have ended up without flights or ways to get home.

The Immigration Bureau has announced that it is granting amnesty for all foreign nationals who have found themselves marooned in Thailand. The key points are…

• Visas that have expired from March 26 onwards will be automatically extended to April 30.

• Foreigners are no longer required to apply in person for an extension at an immigration office

• They will not be charged 500 baht per day for overstaying their visa

• Foreigners who are due to file their 90 day reports, between March 26 and April 30, are also temporarily exempted.

• Foreigners with border passes will be allowed to stay in Thailand for now but will be required to leave Thailand within 7 days once the borders are opened again.

Stranded Burmese permitted to return home

Stranded Burmese people at Chiang Rai’s Mae Sai border crossing in Northern Thailand have been allowed to return home to Myanmar.

The Burmese people, stuck in Thailand since borders were closed have been held in quarantine at a temple in Mae Sai. Myanmar officials allowed them to cross the border after being declared free from Covid-19 infection.

A fleet of 23 trucks transported the nearly 200 Burmese from the temple to the Friendship Bridge at Mae Sai. They’ll be quarantined in Myanmar for another 14 days.

Burmese pair arrested at border for smuggling 16.5 million baht

But the traffic hasn’t all been one way up in the north. Police have arrested two Burmese nationals for trying to smuggle 16.5 million baht in cash into Thailand. The 29 and 24 year olds were arrested following a tip-off.

Police found 16,500 1,000-baht banknotes in two black plastic bags during a routine check.

Police say the pair claimed they were going to deposit the cash at a Kasikorn bank in Mae Sot but they were unable to produce any evidence of bank books or a bank account.

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News & Updates

90 day ban on transporting horses to control AHS virus outbreak

Greeley Pulitzer

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90 day ban on transporting horses to control AHS virus outbreak | The Thaiger
PHOTO: eiriu-eolas.org

Thailand has issued an order banning the movement of all horses nationwide in an effort to stop the spread of African Horse Sickness , which has already killed more than 200 horses in the kingdom. The Ministry of Agriculture announced the order yesterday, effective for 90 days.

The disease has already killed nearly 200 horses in the country.

A spokesman for the the ministry says the AHS deaths have been reported in 4 provinces including Nakhon Ratchasima, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Chon Buri and Phetchaburi since the outbreak began on March 26.

The ministry’s Livestock Department and the National Park, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department told reporters that they’re still investigating the source of the virus.

Horse farm owners are calling on livestock officials to trace the origin of AHS and list it on the Animal Disease Act to pave the way for strict enforcement of animal health regulations. Some farm owners have told the department they suspect zebras imported from Africa are the most likely cause

Many farms have also reportedly threatened a lawsuit against the livestock department for failing to prevent the disease. Officials say they are in the midst of consulting experts for the use of a vaccine to prevent the disease.

SOURCE: Khaosod English | xinhuanet.com

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Stranded Burmese permitted to return home

Sean Kelly

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Stranded Burmese permitted to return home | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Chaing Rai Times

Stranded Burmese people at Chiang Rai’s Mae Sai Tachileik border crossing in Northern Thailand have been allowed to return home to Myanmar.

The Burmese people, stuck in Thailand since borders were closed as a prevention in the spread of Covid-19, have been held in quarantine at Phra That Doi Wao temple in Mae Sai. Myanmar officials allowed them to cross the border after being cleared from Covid-19 infection but will require additional quarantine once back in Myanmar.

burmese people-Chiang Rai

A fleet of 23 trucks transported the nearly 200 Burmese from the temple to the Friendship Bridge connecting Mae Sai with Myanmar’s Tachileik province and are now in a quarantine facility in Myanmar where they will be observed for another 14 days.

SOURCE: Chiang Rai Times

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