Connect with us


Kamnan Winai fighting for a clean Karon

Legacy Phuket Gazette




Winai Chidchiew, 40, is the Subdistrict chief, or Kamnan, of Karon. He has a master’s degree in political science of local development and a bachelor’s in law from Ramkhamhaeng University. He also has a bachelor’s degree in community development from Rajabhat University.

Here, he talks about why he does his job despite assassination attempts, and how he thinks Karon’s problems should be solved.

PHUKET: I’m not afraid to die doing the right thing. People have tried to kill me before, and one time it was very close. But I’m still here. I’ve told my family not to be sorry if I am assassinated, it just means it was my time to go.

I’ve been a leader in Karon for more than 10 years, as Phu Yai Baan (village chief), as council member and then president of the Karon Tambon Administration Organization (OrBorTor), and now as Kamnan. The position I like best is the one I have now, Kamnan. It doesn’t pay big money, but it allows me to be the person that bad guys – corrupt government officials – don’t like. That suits me. I’m clean. Ask me any questions, but make sure you’re ready to answer mine.

I have a real estate business. I build houses and rent out apartments, both in Phuket and in nearby provinces. To be honest, I don’t need to be Kamnan – I could live a comfortable, normal life with my family if I didn’t have this job. But I can’t step down, my sense of responsibility won’t let me. I know Karon needs me. If someone else with the knowledge, vision and courage to stand up against corruption wanted to take my place, I’d say “take it”. But until then, I’ll continue to fight.

Right now the biggest problems Karon faces are black water and lack of water. The solutions are simple. There’s nothing too difficult to fix.

Everyone needs to manage their own wastewater. Those who don’t must be punished. The authorities need to enforce the law strictly. Hotels found breaking the law should be shut down.

To boost our water supplies, we need to build a dam. We have the land for it. I’ve suggested the idea to Karon Municipality officials several times. It seems like they are not listening.

As for another big issue right now, the lease for the Club Med resort, the important thing to keep in mind is that local people are getting nothing. The resort company has been leasing a gorgeous location next to the beach for 30 years, at 150 baht per rai per year. How is that even possible? Leasing a unit to sell fish in a fresh market costs more than that. Is the resort beautiful? Only to those who are getting money from it.

I have a lot of foreign friends. When the black water problems came up this year they called me from overseas to talk about it. I was surprised they knew. They said they read about it in the Phuket Gazette.

This is what I like about the English-language media – it can give local issues international attention, which might push the government to work a bit harder to solve problems. And among the Thais who read an English newspaper, I’d say about 80 per cent are high-ranking officers who have the authority to fix problems.

I was born in Karon; so was my mother. My father is from Kata. My three kids were born here, and my grandchildren and great-grandchildren will surely grow up here. My goal is to preserve Karon for everyone.

What we need is people who are willing to stand up to corrupt officials. We need people to feel that Karon belongs to them, and that they are willing to protect it. If we all felt this way and were united, it would be very hard for people to do bad things here.

I can stay in the office of Kamnan until I’m 60. If I die doing good things for my home and my people, I won’t regret it at all.

— Chutharat Plerin


Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forum
🔔 Subscribe to our daily newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Media5 hours ago

No sex please, we’re Thai

Events6 hours ago

An aquatic meal with Olga Belka – taking art to new depths

Transport9 hours ago

Hua Lamphong (Bangkok Train Station) – History and future | VIDEO

Sponsored3 days ago

CBRE recommends top 5 luxury condominiums in Phuket with fantastic locations

Thailand10 hours ago

Bug-eating challenge with Natty, feat. Mark Abbott | VIDEO

Coronavirus (Covid-19)11 hours ago

UPDATE: Israel bans ALL foreign entry over Omicron

Thailand13 hours ago

New variant could dampen Thailand’s reopening enthusiasm

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Coronavirus (Covid-19)14 hours ago

UPDATE: Latest news on Omicron – what we know

Tourism1 day ago

Songkhla prepares for tourism across the Southern land border

Thailand1 day ago

French expat being denied re-entry to Thailand over repeated criticism of the Thai monarchy

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

COVID-19 SATURDAY: 6,073 infections, 32 deaths, provincial data

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

Omicron causing concern, Thai authorities ban travellers from 8 countries

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

Thailand’s nightlife venues and bars told to keep closed until January 16

Protests1 day ago

Amnesty International under investigation for defending activists

Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 days ago

New Covid-19 strain named “Omicron” and a variant of concern

Thailand2 days ago

Entertainment venues will not open before January 16

Thailand3 months ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism9 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism9 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism9 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11