Thousands turn out to wish the best for HM the King
Ceremony held to show loyalty and reverence for our beloved King
On the occasion of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej
the Great’s 77th birthday, thousands of Chiang Mai citizens, led by
Governor Suwat Tantipat, joined the entire Thai nation in showing their
loyalty to the King and wishing him good health and long life. The local
ceremonies took place in front of Chiang Mai City Hall.
Approximately 5,000 people, including government
officials, soldiers, police and the public joined in the celebrations on
Fireworks were set off in all provinces of Thailand at the appointed time
to show harmony and the loyalty of Thai people throughout the kingdom.
Provincial police to use GIS technology in next year’s general election
Provincial Police Bureau Region 5 will use the Geographic
Information System (GIS) during next year’s general election, said
Panupong Singhara Na Ayuthaya, commissioner of the Provincial Police Bureau
With the GIS, police will go to election sites to control
the situation and can run immediate checks with associated organizations.
The Provincial Police Bureau Region 5 was assigned by the
Royal Thai Police to keep the election free from corruption. On November 13,
the bureau commanded the eight northern provinces to set up election
preparation centers, said Pol Lt Gen Panupong.
Provincial Police Bureau Region 5 is the first region
that has applied GIS technology to watch over the general election. The GIS
could make detailed checking at all election sites so that if any riots or
crime took place the police could pinpoint the problem, said Pol Lt Gen
Chiang Mai prepares for summer drought, appeals for blankets for winter
A plan to prepare for drought in 22 districts and two
sub-districts of Chiang Mai next summer was presented on November 23 by
Chiang Mai Deputy Governor Kwanchai Wongnitikorn.
District offices and Tambon Administration Organizations
will cooperate in checking water resources in their areas of responsibility
in advance, to be well prepared.
Kwanchai said that 389 households and 2,401 rai of
agricultural land in four tambons of Chom Thong and Hot districts have faced
drought every year. The district reserve funds of 1 million baht from 2003
would be used to assist affected dwellers. “If this is inadequate, the
districts can ask for extra funding from the provincial governor as the
government has earmarked 50 million baht for Chiang Mai to use in case of
disasters,” said Kwanchai.
As the weather is getting cooler, a survey found that
87,824 people in Chiang Mai required blankets and winter coats and the
province had distributed just 10,000 blankets, said Kwanchai. These needy
people are mostly hill tribes in Mae Chaem, Omkoi and Phrao districts. The
Chiang Mai Disaster Prevention and Relief Office and Chiang Mai Municipality
have donated over 150 blankets to the city for distribution.
“Chiang Mai province is now appealing to people to
donate blankets and winter coats to those in need, Kwanchai said. (Since by
simple maths they are 77,674 short, there is obviously a much greater need
than is being met by the authorities.) He also warned people to beware of
fire hazards, as the air is getting dry.
North gets ready for forest fires
Drought predicted for 2005
The Chiang Mai-Lamphun Forest Fire Operation Unit has
planned new strategies to combat fires in 2005. Surapol Leelawaropas, its
director, said keeping watch on forest fires, campaigning and getting
cooperation from local administration organizations are also crucial.
Leelawaropas, director of the Chiang Mai-Lamphun Forest Fire Operation Unit.
“Forest fire control teams in local villages have been
formed to network and cooperate in covering all areas at risk in Chiang Mai
and Lamphun,” Surapol said.
This preparation was done following a report by the
Southeast Asia Fire Danger Rating System Project of the Canadian
International Development Agency (CIDA). The report, released on October 13,
said that Thailand’s northeast region was at high risk for forest fires
while the upper and lower north and central regions were at intermediate
The Climate Prediction Center of the United States
National Weather Service also announced that warm currents in the Pacific
Ocean and the El Nino phenomenon would continue in 2005. El Nino would
trigger drought in early 2005 worldwide, especially in Indonesia, according
to the Climate Prediction Center.
This announcement was of great concern to Thailand
because Indonesia was one of the ‘indicators’ of Thailand’s forest
fires, said Surapol. “If Indonesia faces severe forest fires in any year
due to the El Nino, Thailand will experience forest fires as well,” he
Due to these predictions, Chiang Mai and Lamphun need to be well prepared
to cope with the situation, said Surapol.
Globalization must bring us together, says seminar
Chiang Mai hosted the 6th Meeting of the International
Cooperative Alliance Regional Assembly for Asia and the Pacific at Lotus
Pang Suan Kaew Hotel on December 1, in cooperation with the International
Cooperative Alliance of Thailand and Mae Jo University.
Prime Minister Jaturon Chaisaeng (center) and Ivano Barberini (3rd right),
president of the International Cooperative Alliance’s Regional Office for
Asia and the Pacific.
Deputy Prime Minister Jaturon Chaisaeng and Ivano
Barberini, president of the International Cooperative Alliance’s Regional
Office for Asia and the Pacific, presided over the opening.
at the 6th Meeting of the International Cooperative Alliance Regional
Assembly for Asia and the Pacific.
Wirat Aueyuth, president of the Committee of the
International Cooperative Alliance, said that the meeting would also help
strengthen international relationships and stimulate members to improve
their administration systems and build networks in this free trade era.
Barberini said that all cooperatives need to receive a new vision and
operation methods in this challenging age of globalization. “Global
economy has close bonds with global trade and culture, so the cooperatives
have to have a long term vision and flexible policy,” Barberini said.
PM Thaksin Shinawatra opens SMEs Center
Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra opened the Small and
Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs) Center on Toong Hotel Road in Chiang Mai,
next to the Industrial Promotion Center, Northern Region 1 on December 1. He
also opened the 14th Handicraft and Souvenir Fair. Minister of Industry
Pongsak Raktapongpaisarn also attended.
Thaksin Shinawatra with a model of the Northern Region’s SMEs
Center which will be built on a 400-rai area nearby the 700 Year
Anniversary Stadium. Industry Minister Pongsak Raktapongpaisarn
(5th right) informs him about the project.
The SMEs Center is a pilot project in the northern
region. It provides a range of services including product and package
design, product testing, information and advisory services, and training
courses for SMEs and local entrepreneurs. The center is used to hold SME
Thaksin Shinawatra chats with an artisan at the SMEs Center.
PM Thaksin said that, as someone born in the north and
the country’s leader, he wanted to thank the Ministry of Industry for
building the center. He also commented that the main obstacles for regional
entrepreneurs were money, modernity of products, production technology, and
marketing strategies. However, he admired local entrepreneurs’ talent and
spirit in producing the products.
wearing clothes from the Young Designer Contest 2004 at the
A Design Center would be established in Bangkok soon to support and
produce new, talented designers, and the center would be expanded to
regional areas in Chiang Mai, PM Thaksin said.
Finance Ministry bullish over Thai economy
The Thai economy will thrive next year, GDP will increase
over 2004, and domestic investment will be emphasized, according to the
advisor to the Finance Ministry, Assistant Professor Dr Oran Chaiyaprawat.
students and other interested people listen to this lecture.
Dr Oran delivered a public lecture on “Thailand’s
monetary and financial policy” at the Convention Hall in the Faculty of
Economics of Chiang Mai University. More than 200 professors and students in
Economics and members of the public attended.
Professor Dr Oran Chaiyaprawat, Counselor to the Finance
Dr Oran said that the Thai GDP in 1996 was six percent in
deficit. In 1998, the current account showed a slight surplus. Recently, the
account has been in surplus by six percent of GDP.
He declared that, from December 1, 2004, it will be a
remarkable event in Thai economic history because the country has now less
foreign loans than the national reserves.
He also mentioned the monetary management policy of this
government to produce national monetary stability. The Thai economic
structure has changed. One main factor driving the economy was changing from
consumption and export to consumption and domestic investment instead.
He said, “PM Thaksin Shinawatra said that the last 4-5 years were the
period of reparation, the upcoming years will be the period of
consolidation.” This government has pushed the production capacity up to
72 percent, he told the auditorium. It can be said that this government has
geared up to implement the domestic and foreign policy through the exports
and tourism to ensure economic stability and growth.
Annual plea for blankets and warm clothing for the needy
Chiang Mai Disaster Prevention and
Relief Office begging
Patrawan Sadudee, chief of Disaster Prevention and Relief
Office, Chiang Mai said that from November until February of each year, some
Chiang Mai citizens suffer badly from the cold, especially people living on
high mountains or exposed rural areas.
This year, the Meteorology Department has said that the
high air pressure and cold air mass from China has gradually covered the
northern region of Thailand, and as a result, the temperature will keep
It is claimed that Chiang Mai does not receive enough
money to provide warm clothing for its citizens. Therefore, to prevent this
repetitive problem, the Public Welfare Prevention and Alleviation Department
in Chiang Mai will ask for donations of blankets and warm clothes to help
needy people in the Chiang Mai area.
For more information, the donation center is at the
Public Welfare Prevention and Alleviation Department in Chiang Mai, 118/4
Sigh Monument Rd., tambon Chang Peuk, Muang district, 50300 or tel/fax
0-5322-1470 and 0-5321-2626 during office hours.
Drug suppression and property confiscation operations in the north
The results of a two month operation of the 2nd War on
Drugs in the eight Northern provinces were declared on November 4 at the
Provincial Police Bureau Region 5.
Commissioner of the Provincial Police Bureau Region 5,
Pol Lt Gen Panupong Singhara Na Ayuthaya, and Provincial Police Chief of the
eight Northern provinces presented a report at the press conference.
of the Provincial Police Bureau Region 5, Pol Lt Gen Panupong
Singhara Na Ayuthaya (second left, second row), Pol Maj Gen
Wutti Wittitanon, deputy commissioner (right, second row)
observe the confiscated drugs and weapons.
Eleven suspects and 181,796 ya ba tablets, a 10 wheel
truck, four pick-up trucks, two motorcycles, two AK-47s and 27 bullets, a
shotgun and nine bullets, a grenade and 280,000 baht in cash were displayed
The names of four of the suspects were released. They are
Daeng Meekam, 41, a Burmese Thai Yai; Kam Jailuang, 35, from Wiang Haeng
district; Jawa Jakue, 50; and Jajoi Ja-or, 35 from Mae Taeng district.
In this 2nd War on Drug, from October 4 to December 4,
the eight northern provincial police divisions under the supervision of the
Provincial Police Bureau Region 5 were able to arrest 1,334 drug dealers and
users, confiscate 487,700 ya ba tablets, 22,450 grams of heroin, 3,500 grams
of opium and 4600 grams of hashish, declared Pol Lt Gen Panupong.
The police have confiscated 70 million baht from the
culprits, eliminated 145 drug networks, and arrested 18 drug network
In 175 cases, arrests were made following information
given by previously arrested dealers and users, and 94 of the suspects
already had arrest warrants issued against them.
During the last two weeks of the operation, Chiang Mai
and Chiang Rai provincial police arrested one dealer, confiscated 1,600 ya
ba tablets, an AK-47, ammunition and grenades. During some arrests, the
suspects fought back and seven died in the skirmishes.
The country’s biggest dealer, Jeerasak “Ar-Seu”
Chatworaniti, was named at the press conference as the most wanted suspect
in the region. It was reported that he changed his name and escaped to stay
along the Thai-Burmese and Thai-Lao borders. He has a transportation company
in a neighboring country.
Many of the arrested dealers were found to belong to
Jeerasak’s networks and the police confiscated property and cash worth a
total of 600 million baht from this network, said Pol Maj Gen Wutti
Wittitanon, deputy commissioner of the Provincial Police Bureau Region 5.
The Royal Thai Police is offering a 1 million baht reward
for his arrest. However, Jeerasak is very influential in Myanmar as the
Burmese soldiers had reported to the Thai police that people who wanted to
inform the police and tried to catch him would be killed before they
succeeded, said Pol Maj Gen Wutti.
A reward of 5,000 baht has also been set for people who
inform the police of any dealer’s whereabouts and if the dealer is
arrested, the reward will be doubled. People can inform the police at
As the New Year Festival approaches, police will intensify their
suppression of troublesome teenage gangs, who always cause violence and
trouble during the festival, said Pol Lt Gen Panupong.
Pha Muang Task Force soldiers assigned to deal with drugs, border security
190 Pha Muang Task Force soldiers have been assigned to
deal with drugs and security, specifically targeting villages along the
Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai borders with Myanmar and Laos.
Gen Manus Paorik, commander of Pha Muang Task Force.
Many villagers in the two provinces continue to
experience problems related to national security, drugs and illegal workers
entering Thailand. To encourage them to participate in solving the problems,
Maj Gen Manus Paorik, commander of Pha Muang Task Force, dispatched his men
on December 1.
They also set up 10 local public relations centers in
four border villages in Chiang Mai and six in Chiang Rai. They have been
tasked to elicit cooperation in poverty alleviation in Baan Lee Saw Pa Kluay,
tambon Piang Luang, Wiang Haeng district, and in securing peace in
Chaiprakarn district, Chiang Mai, and the Mae Sai and Chiang Saen districts
of Chiang Rai.
They will conduct camps for youths, community leaders and volunteers as a
sign of the country’s gratitude. Public speakers from the Pha Muang Task
Force will speak on drugs, moral values and leadership. This project is
aimed to involve 80,000 leaders and volunteers.
More on the War on Drugs II
A press conference to announce progress in the 2nd War on
Drugs was held on December 2 at Duang Tawan Hotel, Chiang Mai.
Suwat Jan-ittipol, deputy secretary of ONCB (Office of
Narcotics Control Board) said that from now on the ONCB would concentrate on
people and places. All known traffickers and users would be targeted while
drug conduits along the border remain under scrutiny.
Jan-ittipol (center), deputy secretary of Office of
Narcotic Control Board (ONCB); Pol Maj Gen Wutti
Wittitanon (3rd right), deputy commissioner of the
Provincial Police Bureau Region 5; Pol Maj Gen Rachata
Yensuang (third left), deputy commissioner of the
Provincial Police Bureau Region 6; Col Pairat Thongjatu
(second left), deputy commander of Pha Muang Task Force
and Pol Col Kosin Boonsang (left), deputy commissioner of
the Border Patrol Police Bureau Region 3.
Arrest and property confiscation are main measures for
traffickers while rehabilitation will be provided for users. At present,
there are approximately 50,000 drug users.
More armed soldiers will be positioned at border areas
and a close relationship between Thai and Burmese border villages will be
built, said Suwat.
Youth is the group most at risk, so attitude change and
alternative activities are important to keep them away from drugs.
Col Pairat Thongjatu, deputy commander of Pha Muang Task
Force said that they are watching spots starting from Tak, Chiang Mai,
Chiang Rai and Mae Hong Son borders. Mae Fa Luang district of Chiang Rai is
the most scrutinized border area.
Strong suppression by the 3rd Army Region reduced the
amount of drugs being stocked along the border, said Col Pairat.
Pol Maj Gen Wutti Wittitanon, deputy commissioner of the
Provincial Police Bureau Region 5 suggested that to eradicate the drug
cycle, attention needs to be paid to the very primary level; for instance,
limiting the number of roadside bars and selling liqueur and cigarettes to
The Provincial Police Bureau Region 5 has a list of 4,000
wanted drug dealers, and they set a bounty of 5,000 baht for each arrest.
Pol Maj Gen Rachata Yensuang, deputy commissioner of the Provincial
Police Bureau Region 6 reported that his team has arrested 660 drug dealers
and confiscated a total of 50 million baht in property. Three large networks
have been broken up. The Provincial Police Bureau Region 6 covers 9 lower
North provinces: Kamphaengpetch, Tak, Nakornsawan, Pichit, Phitsanulok,
Petchaboon, Sukhothai, Uttradit and Uthaithani.
Thief arrested with items worth 300,000 baht
Investigation police from Mae Ping police station
arrested a 26 year old who allegedly stole valuables from mansions and
condominiums in Chiang Mai’s Muang district.
Col Chamnarn Ruad-rew, Chiang Mai deputy provincial police
chief (left), and Rachan Suriyapor (second left) at the
press conference stand in front of some stolen property.
Rachan Suriyapor was arrested on December 2 with 35 items
of property in his possession, including a gold necklace and bracelet, gold
plated Buddha image, notebook computer, game play station, mobile phones,
watches, television, stereo, walkman and cash, together worth about 300,000
baht, all of which was seized as evidence. This arrest follows many reports
of theft made to the Mae Ping and Phu Ping Palace police stations.
According to the investigation, Rachan usually wandered
around the mansions and condominiums in Muang district and targeted rooms he
saw were empty. Then he used a screw driver and spanner to pry open the door
to steal property.
He kept some of stolen belongings for himself and some
were sold to fences. During questioning, Rachan revealed that he had
committed theft many times and some of his targets were Angkade Pavillion,
S.R. Condominium, Payap Mansion, P.P. Condominium, Sri-A-nunt Condominium,
and Ban Krung Thai building, which are under the responsibility of Mae Ping
police station; View Doi Condominium and Hillside Condominium, which are in
areas under the jurisdiction of Chang Puek police station; and Sri Thana
Condominium and Sirinart Dormitory in the Phu Ping police station area.
Anyone who suspects that their belongings were stolen by the accused can
contact the police at Mae Ping police station.