Spotlight shines on more shady street lamp projects by local Thailand governments

Photo via สำรวจโลก

In another street light corruption case involving local governments in Thailand purchasing fancy lamp posts at exorbitant prices, photos of the decorative lamps lining a dirt road in an Isaan province is raising questions from Thais about why the government is spending its funds on what’s considered to be lavish purchases instead of improving infrastructure.

The lamp posts adorned with naga figures, half-human, half-cobra mythical beings, line a dirt road to a park in the northeastern province Mukdahan. Reports say the park was neglected with trash, used condoms, and drug paraphernalia found in the grass. According to Thai media, the lamps along the dirt road were part of a 29 million baht provincial developing project under the Department of Public Works and Town & Country Planning.

Over the past year, the spotlight on the shady street lamp purchases has been on one local government organisation in Samut Prakan, just southeast of Bangkok. Hundreds of decorative lamps topped with a mythical half-bird, half-woman, painted in gold, have been placed in the province’s Racha Thewa area. Some along streets need to be developed. Almost 1 billion baht has been spent on the decorative lamp posts in Racha Thewa since 2013, the Anti-Corruption Organisation of Thailand, or ACT, estimates.

Accusations that the government in Racha Thewa overpaid for the street lamps have shined a light on similar development projects in other provinces. Many have posted photos of the decorative lamposts throughout Thailand, with some complaining that the lamps aren’t even working.

In the eastern province Sa Kaeo, which borders Cambodia, locals say fancy street lamps along a pathway by a canal aren’t even working. The lamps were part of a 10.5 million baht project. The deputy mayor of the province said the beautiful lamps made the atmosphere better.

Pricey street lamps in different provinces
Fancy street lamps from different provinces in Thailand | Photo via สำรวจโลก


Spotlight shines on more shady street lamp projects by local Thailand governments | News by Thaiger

Thailand News

Petch Petpailin

Petpailin, or Petch, is a Thai translator and writer for The Thaiger who focuses on translating breakingThai news stories into English. With a background in field journalism, Petch brings several years of experience to the English News desk at The Thaiger. Before joining The Thaiger, Petch worked as a content writer for several known blogging sites in Bangkok, including Happio and The Smart Local. Her articles have been syndicated by many big publishers in Thailand and internationally, including the Daily Mail, The Sun and the Bangkok Post. She is a news writer who stops reading news on the weekends to spend more time cafe hopping and petting dwarf shrimp! But during office hours, you can find Petch on LinkedIn and you can reach her by email at

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