When children in class misbehave, teachers contact the parents and tell them to keep their kids in line. But what do you do when foreign tourists are misbehaving in your country? Phuket Governor Narong Woonciew met today with Consul Generals and Honorary Consuls from 8 countries to ask them to warn their citizens to follow the rules – especially Covid-19 regulations – while visiting the island and all of Thailand.
The Consul General of Australia and the Russian Federation in Phuket were joined by the Honorary Consul General of Mexico and Nepal, and the Honorary Consul of Austria, the Netherlands, Norway, and Switzerland. The group of representatives for the 8 countries met with Governor Narong, the Deputy Governor of Phuket Executives and the President of the Phuket Provincial Tourism Business Association.
The meeting opened with an update on the Covid-19, addressing the surge in cases, the introduction of the Omicron variant in Thailand, and the general situation in Phuket. They discussed the current safety measures and restrictions in place in an attempt to contain Covid-19 as must as possible and protect from mass outbreaks.
Then the topic turned to misbehaving tourists. Governor Narong asked all the foreign representatives to stress to their visiting citizens the importance of following all the Covid-19 safety measures and rules while in the Kingdom and in Phuket. This includes following the Phuket Provincial Order that makes mask-wearing mandatory in all public areas outside of one’s home or vehicle.
He stressed that tourists must follow the same procedures as Thais, including having the social responsibility to get tested and seek medical care if they experience any symptoms or are in high-risk locations or demographics. The Phuket Provincial Public Health Office has procedures and facilities in place for anyone who suspects they have Covid-19.
The governor reminded that the penalties for violating Covid-19 restrictions is up to 2 years in jail and a 40,000 baht fine, though police have been notoriously lax on punishment, if any punishment is given at all.
The representatives from the 8 countries asked that all changes and details of Covid-19 rules be sent to them all in a group chat on the LINE app so that they can keep abreast and send out accurate information to their citizens.
They also asked that the government help fight the spread of Covid-19 by providing citizens from each of the 8 countries with vaccines and booster shots, along with clear timelines and communication about vaccination.
SOURCE: The Phuket News
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