PHUKET: It is sad that Phuket’s two specially-trained drug dogs have been suspended from “active duty” for lack of dedicated handlers, especially given the time invested in their training and the phenomenal results displayed by the beagle Bebe during her first day on the job last July.
[See page 6, this week’s issue of the Phuket Gazette. Digital subscribers click here to download the full newspaper.]
Despite a steady stream of highly-publicized drug arrests and seizures over the past year, there can be little doubt that our island is still awash in illegal narcotics, especially ya bah (methamphetamine) and its crystallized version ya ice (crystal methamphetamine).
Statistics released by Phuket Provincial Police show that drug-related arrests accounted for 3,385 crime cases recorded in Phuket in fiscal 2011, more than half (54.1%) of all crime cases in the province during that period. This was a 6.2% increase year-on-year in the number of drug cases, which was almost five times the number of cases in the second most popular crime category: gambling.
With figures like these, it comes as little surprise that drug convicts make up about 75% of the inmates at Phuket Prison.
The ease with which these drugs are obtained was highlighted yet again recently when six young teenage students were found to have skipped school and broken into a derelict disco, where they smoked meth for two consecutive days. How 13-year-olds can come up with the money to pay for these expensive drugs is anyone’s guess, but the fact that it happened puts the role – or lack thereof – of parents at the forefront.
Despite such worrying trends, suppression efforts by both police and provincial drug units have largely remained static in terms of approach. Where “innovation” has been called into play in terms of improving detection capability, the results have bordered on the comical. As anyone who follows the local news is aware, mountains of ya bah pills have been smuggled onto the island over the years aboard tour buses running the Bangkok-Phuket route.
Yet, rather than training dogs to check the baggage holds of buses and suspicious vehicles crossing onto the island at Tah Chat Chai, the authorities a few years back opted to invest millions of baht to buy Alpha 6 “molecular resonance” detectors, even after the “technology” they were based upon had already been completely discredited abroad.
Thus it was an exciting breakthrough when Muang District Chief Supachai Pochanakul’s beagle Bebe sniffed out stashes of both yah ba and yah ice just five minutes into her first assignment last July. Unfortunately, she and her handler have now parted ways and what looked to be a very promising career is now on hold – indefinitely.
It is time for the police themselves get into the drug-dog training business, rather than leaving it as the ‘pet project’ of one well-intended civil servant. Meanwhile, it is to be hoped most fervently that Bebe is not gone because she proved too effective on the job.
‘Always Smile Journey’ raises fund to provide free English classes for underprivileged people
On October 18, the ‘Always Smile Journey’ group and its partners will host an exhibition with plenty of fun activities at the Yak Yai Market, near Chalong Circle, in Phuket. This event was designed to raise funds to provide free English classes for underprivileged people on the island of Phuket on Saturdays and Sundays. The group does not accept donations but aims to raise money through the sales of the products available at the event.
From 2 pm to 8 pm, there will be a number of artists, musicians and performers who will keep the attendees entertained along the way. There will be a short film about His Majesty King Rama 9 as well as fun activities and games for kids and families, which are all free of charge.
The big bike crew is also a part of this event. They will ride a parade from Rawai Beach heading to the market and showcase their gorgeous two-wheel buddies.
One of the highlights of the Always Smile Journey exhibition is the ‘Happening’ artists group, who will draw and paint a picture of the His Majesty King Rama 9 under the name ‘Street Art King Bhumibol’ on a 4×10 meter sign live at the event so the guests will experience this large-scale art in action. The Happening will also offer portrait sketching for the participants.
There will also be some western menus available at the event which will be donated to underprivileged children.
This free English class project has over seven years of experience through its cooperation working with individuals and other charity organizations. Throughout the years, the group visited several areas such as Ban Laem Hoy School, Ban Bopud School and Ban Angthong School in Samui, Surat Thani province, Ban Bueng Ao Oun School and Ban Kakoh Rayong, in Surin province, Jalae Village of Lahu (Muser) in Chiang Rai province, as well as community education centers in Siem Reap, Cambodia and in Luang Prabang, in Laos.
This event is a cooperation between several groups, including Happening, Yak Yai Market and Arrow Media, Tattoo artist group, Thonburi Art School Alumni, International School of Tourism, Suratthani Rajabhat University, big bike group from Phuket, artists/performers/musicians from many provinces as well as several businesses across Phuket.
The world’s fastest growing tourist destinations
PHOTO: Hello Phuket – destined for huge tourist growth in the next six years – fodors.com
In 2018, international tourist arrival traffic grew by 6% to reach a total of 1.4 billion world tourists, according to research by UNWTO World Tourism Barometer. And there’s a lot more to come with international travel predicted to increase by a massive 35% over the next six years to 2025.
But where is all that extra traffic going to go? Which destinations are quiet now that might be swarming with tourists in the years to come? Two destinations in Thailand are set for a prosperous future, according to the data. Whilst almost all the growth is excepted to be to Asian destinations, an under-visited resource for world tourism so far.
Euromonitor data has been used to simulate tourist growth models and reveal the fastest growing projected visitor arrivals in major cities and destinations around the world for 2025, compared to arrival figures in 2018.
In Thailand, Phuket’s tourist traffic is poised to increase up to 85% in the next six years, from nearly 12 million arrivals in 2018 to over 22 million in 2025. Bangkok is predicted to see the 8th most prolific rise in tourist traffic, with arrivals in Bangkok set to swell an additional 68% during the same period. Doha, the capital of Qatar, is set to explode with 104% increase in traffic over the next six years.
The data also predicts that both Bangkok and Phuket will rebound big time in 2020, Phuket in particular with a growth of around 20% for the next year, accord to the data from TravelSupermarket.com.
By 2025 the data predicts that Bangkok will be the world’s #1 tourist destination, a position it’s held before in recent years. The Thai capital will be followed by Singapore, Dubai, Phuket and Kuala Lumpur, making South East Asia the world’s emerging tourism hotspot.
Some of the world’s favourites – New York, Paris, London – will continue to grow their tourist numbers but not at the rate of most Asian destinations.
You can read the full list HERE.
Stats compiled by travelsupermarket.com
Stats compiled by travelsupermarket.com
Rawai beachfront water shut-off tomorrow for mains works
The Phuket Provincial Waterworks Authority says Rawai’s mains water supply will be shut off tomorrow (Tuesday, October 15) as new water pipes are fitted in front of The Title Beach Front condo resort complex on the town’s beachfront.
The mains water supply will be shut off from 9am until 4:30pm along the beachfront strip.
The PWA says the areas affected will be along Wiset Road along the Rawai beachfront road, as well as Soi Yanui and Soi Ruafaed.
Residents and businesses are being urged to collect water for use during the day today, before tomorrow morning’s shut-off.
As usual, the PWA say…“We apologise for any inconvenience caused.”
Contact the Phuket Provincial Waterworks Authority on 076 319173 or 082 7901634 for more details.
Keep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.
The Thaiger Newsletter
Top 10 things to do in Phuket when it rains (2019)
Top 10 scams in Thailand (2019)
Top 10 spas and massages in Phuket
Top 10 news sources in Thailand (2019)
So you’re moving to Vietnam?
Immigration overhaul – TM6 disappearing and TM30 App being launched
14% of condos around Bangkok are empty – good time to buy
Voice TV report paints grim picture of Thailand’s tourism problems
Patong Mayor hands out useless, cheap face-masks
Indonesia’s President Jokowi says he is “embarrassed” by fires
Stricter controls and paperwork putting brakes on residential property market
Top 5 reasons why Aussies choose medical tourism in Thailand
British Instagrammer locked up in “filthy Bangkok cell’ over missing passport pages
Thailand’s changing tourist demographic – the Indians
Bangkok land prices plateau, new tax on the way
500 people own 36% of equity in Thai companies
Bodies of 8 dead elephants risk contaminating reservoir in Thai national park
True to introduce 5G with help from China Mobile
Over 100 million baht worth of assets seized from Thai drug dealers
New Wellness venture in Thailand, Singapore multi-national teams up with Anantara Hotel Group
Thais go bananas over freak plants in pursuit of lottery numbers
Clean Up to the Countdown – Crackdown on illegal software
Thai Airways must modify rehabilitation plan to survive: Airline President
Thai app will ease expat immigration woes and make 90 day reporting simple
EU and UK zone in on possible breakthrough
Karaoke premises raided in central Thailand, 3 underage sex workers rescued
Burmese surfing team head to SEAsia Games, a first for Myanmar
Hostage drama in Chiang Mai – Man holds seven 7-Eleven employees hostage.
The K-pop Olympics: performers battle in the K-pop festival
Singha grabs a 90% stake in Thailand’s Santa Fe restaurant chain
ตรวจหวย 16/10/62 รางวัลที่ 1 เลขท้าย 2 ตัว 3 ตัว เลขหน้า 3 ตัว และรางวัลอื่น ๆ
ตรวจหวย 16 ตุลาคม 2562 ผลสลากกินแบ่งรัฐบาล 16/10/62
ถ่ายทอดสด “สลากกินแบ่งรัฐบาล” 16 ตุลาคม 2562 ลุ้นรางวัลที่ 1 สด ๆ
หนุ่มแท็กซี่ฉาว ท้าต่อยเจ้าของธุรกิจเต๊นท์ กลางงานสนามหลวง
ไทยแชมป์วอลเลย์บอลอาเซียนกรังด์ปรีซ์สนาม 2 รางวัลรายบุคคล
ตรวจหวย1ตุลาคม2562 ผลรางวัลที่ 1 เลขท้าย 2 ตัว 3 ตัว เลขหน้า 3 ตัว และรางวัลอื่น ๆ
ถ่ายทอดสดหวย 1 ตุลาคม 2562 ลุ้นรางวัลที่ 1 สลากกินแบ่งรัฐบาล
สีจิ้นผิงกล่าวสุนทรพจน์ ครบรอบ 70 ปีก่อตั้งสาธารณรัฐประชาชนจีน -ลิงก์ถ่ายทอดสด
คลิปไฮไลท์วอลเลย์บอลเวิลด์คัพ 2019 นัดที่ 5
คลิปไฮไลท์ วอลเลย์บอลเวิลด์คัพ 2019 นัดที่ 1
Paramount เตรียมรีเมค FACE/OFF หนังบู๊ระดับตำนาน
ประยุทธ์ โต้ รัฐบาลไหนก็มีตำหนิทั้งนั้น “ถึงเวลาก็อ้างอย่างที่ผมอ้าง”
อารัมภบท รักฉุดใจนายฉุกเฉิน My ambulance ตอนแรก 6 กันยานี้
วอลเลย์บอลหญิงชิงแชมป์ยุโรป 2019 โฉมหน้า 4 ทีมตัดเชือกรอบรอง
บิ๊กไบก์หัวร้อน ตบหัวลุงพิการผัวะ ‘รถกูเป็นอะไร มีปัญญารับผิดชอบไหม’
- Opinion2 days ago
Buddhists call for boycott of Hilton & Waldorf Astoria Hotels with the opening of Siddhartha Lounge
- World3 days ago
Nigerian astronaut needs $3 million to get home
- Expats2 days ago
“Auf Wiedersehen” to overstaying German on Koh Samui
- Economy3 days ago
“Eat, Shop, Spend” drive reaches registration target
- Thailand4 days ago
Finance Ministry approves stimulus package to spur tourism
- Phuket3 days ago
Rawai beachfront water shut-off tomorrow for mains works
- Environment2 days ago
Thailand’s swift response to the ‘fall armyworm’ pest
- Events3 days ago
Tour De France comes to Phang Nga – L’Etape Thailand on October 27