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Phuket sets up committee to manage Layan & Laypang beaches

The Thaiger & The Nation

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PHOTO: OrBorTor President Ma’Ann Samran showing reporters and officials where the beach is.

By Salinee Prap

Phuket has set up a committee to manage the 178-rai Layan and Laypang beaches in Thalang district after it was ruled as public space by the Supreme Court last year.

Efforts will be made to allow common use and prevent anymore encroachments, Phuket Land official Amnuay Pinsuwan revealed today (January 11).

The Supreme Court had issued the ruling on November 1, rejecting a lawsuit brought by six businesspeople who had challenged the province’s 2003 announcement of the land being public place.

There were nine businesspeople who contested the provincial decision but only six of them approached the court. The Supreme Court confirmed the previous courts’ ruling that the 178 rai was public land. Restaurants and businesses occupying this 178-rai land located in Tambon Cherngtalay had been told to vacate and their structures demolished by January 2.

But some areas remain occupied by new people who started their businesses before the court judgement and claimed they had nothing to do with the businesses that the court had ordered to move out. Amnuay said the authorities were gathering information about the area’s occupants.

Phuket’s Governor Plodthong has assigned Amnuay’s office and public prosecutors to bring the legal execution warrant to compel the remaining four businesspeople to comply with the court order by vacating the land.

An administrative order was issued for two occupants to move out and demolish their shops, despite their claim of no involvement with the legal battle. Another administrative order was for three businesspeople, who were involved in the original dispute but did not join the court battle, to also vacate, he said.

“The governor has instructed officials to implement clear and strict management measures to prevent future issues, including creation of a land management panel,” he said.

He also said that another committee was set up to check on the land’s exact territory and measurements, while the Cherng Talay Administrative Organisation was assigned to seek the demarcation of this land by Phuket Land Office, with territory markers erected.

This ‘map’ would be submitted for the National Land Committee’s approval and it would be announced as public land in the Royal Gazette.

The provincial-level panel would convene meetings to draw up measures for the management of the 178-rai land, which was initially divided into two parts: the conserved area behind a line of pine and coconut trees, and the beach area for public use.

- The Thaiger & The Nation

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Bangkok: Invitation accepted – 30 political parties will meet for talks Monday

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Thirty Thai political parties have accepted the invitation to meet Deputy PM Prawit Wongsuwan at tomorrow’s (Monday) meeting hosted by the government. The government promised this ‘getting to know you session’ as part of the roadmap towards the next election, scheduled for February.

Gen Prawit says the meeting scheduled for June 25 will be attended by representatives of at least 30 political parties who have already accepted the invitation. Although attendance at the meeting is not mandatory, he said it would be ideal to have all parties, intending to run in the forthcoming election, take part in the discussions.

In the meantime, Election Commission secretary-general Pol Col Jarungwit Phumma says that conclusions derived from his discussions with Deputy Prime Minister for Legal Affairs Wissanu Krea-ngam regarding problems and obstacles faced by political parties will also be presented at Monday’s meeting.

Meanwhile the Thai PM, speaking from his week of talk in the UK, re-iterated his commitment to a February date for the next election. Read the story HERE.

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Chiang Rai: Rescue operation looking for 11 footballers and a coach trapped in a flooded cave

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11 teenage footballers, along with their coach, have been stuck in a flooded Chiang Rai cave since last night (Saturday). Rescuers have been trying to get to the team who are trapped in a flooded cave in the region’s Mae Sai district. The cave is located in the Tham Luang-Khunnam Nang Non national park.

The footballers are all from the Tambon Pong Pha and aged between 13-15. They went to the Luang Nang Non cave with their coach coach after finishing weekly training on Saturday afternoon. Thai PBS reports that 11 bicycles and a motorbike were found at the mouth of the cave by park officials at about 7pm on Saturday night.  Some backpacks and soccer shoes were sitting in baskets and attached to the bikes and motorbikes when rescuers arrived.

Park officials then contacted the chairman of the soccer team and asked him to come to the cave to identify the belongings and confirm if they belonged to his team.  He told the park officials that his boys and the coach went into the cave but then weren’t able to get out after water from heavy rains flooded the cave entrance. He said he had sought help from emergency responders from the Mae Sai district.

The rescue team arrived at the cave but weren’t able to get far because they didn’t have the right diving gear to access the flooded cave.

The same team returned this morning (Sunday) with their gear to begin their rescue mission.

UPDATE: Up to 2pm Sunday rescuers have still no located the missing team and their coach.

SOURCE: Thai PBS and Love Mae Sai Facebook page.

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Chiang Mai: European tourist catches Legionnaires’ Disease in hotel

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A European tourist, his nationality has not been named, has succumbed to the Legionnaire bacteria in a Chiang Mai hotel. A public health official in the northern city admits that the tourist went down with Legionnaires’ Disease after staying in Chiang Mai. He says that foreigners tend not to have resistance to the legionella bacteria that causes the condition.

But added that Thais have a natural resistance to the bacteria (in researching the topic we couldn’t verify any evidence of the health official’s claims.).

Sanook is reporting that Dr Sumeth Onwandee, head of the Urban Institute for Disease Prevention in the northern Thai capital, said that the hotel’s hot water systems including a reservoir for hot water, taps and shower heads were checked. The hotel was not named.

The bacteria propagates in temperatures of 32 to 35 degrees.

Infected people can develop a ‘kind’ of pneumonia. There are thought to be about 8,000 to 18,000 cases in the US each year. The disease was first identified after the 1976 American Legion convention in a hotel in Philadelphia.

Many legionnaires and other people died prompting one of the biggest disease investigations in US history.  There is no vaccine for the disease and prevention depends on good maintenance of water systems.

Dr Sumeth said that most Thais are immune though foreigners are more susceptible.

Sanook did not report on the condition of the tourist who contracted the disease.

SOURCE: Sanook

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