New Phuket Vice-Governors appointed

PHUKET CITY: Two new Vice-Governors will take up their posts on the island on December 4. On the same day, current Phuket Vice-Governor Pongsak Plaivaj will be transferred to Prachuap Khiri Khan Province, where he will serve as a Vice-Governor.

The two new Vice-Governors will be Tri Augkaradacha, promoted from Roi-Et Provincial Chief Administrative Officer, and Smith Palawatvichai, currently serving as Provincial Office Chief in Chaiyaphum.

The appointments will restore Phuket’s top bureaucratic line-up to its standard makeup of one Governor – currently Niran Kalayanamit – with three Vice-Governors.

One post as Vice-Governor became vacant on October 31, when V/Gov Niran was promoted to Governor. The third post is already filled by V/Gov Vorapoj Rattasima, who will continue his work in the province.

K. Tri, 54, is a native of Nakhon Pathom Province, and married with three children. He holds a master’s degree in public administration from a university in Kentucky. His previous posts include positions in Mukdahan, Roi-Et and his home province of Nakhon Pathom.

K. Tri is familiar with Phuket, having traveled here on holiday while working as District Chief of Surat Thani’s Naderm District some 13 years ago.

Despite the obvious differences between Phuket and a rural province such as Roi-Et, he said his administrative experience gives him confidence in his ability to do a good job here.

K. Smith is a native of Bangkok, where his wife and son reside. He is also familiar with the South, having served as chief planning officer in Krabi in the early 1980s. He has also visited Phuket many times as a tourist. K. Smith said he is looking forward to working in Phuket because the public sector here is considered more unified and harmonious than in Chaiyaphum.

Average annual income in the agriculture-dependent Northeastern province is only around 30,000 baht, compared with 100,000 baht in Phuket, he said.

Although Phuket is a small province with only three districts, promotions into the province are generally seen as a big step up in the Thai government hierarchy.

Phuket News
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