About 100 beach vendors and retailers gathered on Surin Beach today (November 27), calling for a solution after 3 years of beach ‘management’ where they were promised, but still haven’t received, a venue to make a living.
The group of locals filed letters of complaints, as well as suggestions, to the President of Cherngtalay OrBorTor, Thalang District Chief, Phuket’s Governor and the Land Department Director General to find a solution together.
“We are gathering today to ask the Cherngtalay OrBorTor to find a place for people to make a living after they destroyed the buildings that the OrBorJor originally built for the local people, including all the vending stalls. It’s been 3 years and we would like them to urgently work on this as the locals are in trouble,” said Pradab Koliyanon and Teeradech Kongsittidech from the group.
The group called for 12 points including:
1. Cherngtalay OrBorTor approves in writings to let the people sell legally in public
2. Cherngtalay OrBorTor has to confirm that they referred to the National Council for Peace and Order about beach management to demolish all the shops and stalls
3. Issue a legal license for masseurs
4. Make a clear boundary to mark the 250 rai land plot that exists since 1931
5. Provide beach lifeguards and marine rescue equipment for beachgoers
6. Cherntalay OrBorTor provides at least 2 public toilets at the beach
7. The lighting at the field has to be bright enough to ensure the safety for beachgoers and locals
8. The field has to be kept clean and safe all year long
9. The building of the football field at Surin Beach need to be investigated (where did the money from? who approved it?)
10. Does the umbrella and sunbed ban on the beach have a double standard?
11. All the buildings around the beach such as the Sala Chalermphrakiet, tourist centre, water treatment well, the retention wall and hotels have to be verified for their building permit
12. Surin Village road is damaged and there is no one responsible for it
After the beach management started Surin Beach has been turned into a restricted beach area – any action of encroachment is prohibited in the area. However, there are some stalls in front of the road before the beach while there are also other shops on the opposite side with chairs and tables, fruit juice stalls and venders, which the villagers think are not well organised and need to be provided a better location.
“Normally, the military do not allow anyone to make business on Surin Beach as it is a restricted beach. We have negotiated with the group to move their belongings from the beach area to the beachside road temporarily as the Cherngtalay Municipality is looking for a new location for them. Concerning a ‘deal’ between Cherngtalay OrBorTor and this group, I have never heard of it. Our mission is to protect the beach from encroachment,” said Lt Col Surasak Puengyam.
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