PHUKET: Governor CEO Pongpayome Vasaputi has proposed assigning small plots of public land to poor people in order to stop further encroachment into Phuket’s dwindling mangrove forests. Gov Pongpayome said in a recent announcement that he had received several complaints about families setting up homes in the mangroves of Phuket. To solve the problem, he recommends building small “villages” with road access at the margins of public mangrove land, and giving each mangrove-dwelling family a plot of 20 square wah within the village. Public land will be clearly marked, explained the Governor, and no one will be allowed to build anything outside the designated areas. He also recommended that the Forestry Department conduct a study to determine how many people are living in the mangroves and where they are concentrated. The proposal has been sent to the cabinet in Bangkok for approval.
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