Vol. IX No. 35 - Friday
October 1 - October 15, 2010

Arts - Entertainment & It
Eating Out& Entertainment
Around Town
Travel & Tourism
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Long Live Her Majesty Queen Sirikit
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Updated by Saichon Paewsoongnern

HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

Lampang born actress in paternity row with music star

Influenza on the rise as cool season approaches

Chiang Mai and China sign cooperation agreement

UDD Rally at Municipal Stadium

Floods in Mae Taman valley prompt flood warning

New U.S. Consul General visits Expats Club

Lampang born actress in paternity row with music star

Thaweerat Pensalaphan

Rungnapha “Annie” Brook from Jae Hom in Lampang, a popular actress who has been embroiled in a paternity scandal with well known actor, Rattaphum “Film” Tokongsap, has been reported by her mother, Chankam Meelek, to have returned home after the actor finally agreed to forego a paternity test on their baby.

TV crews and press interview the mother of the embattled actress.

Mrs. Chankam said that she had raised Annie alone in Lampang after her Swiss father returned to his home country when his daughter was on 3 months old and that Annie had started working at the age of 12 to help with expenses.

She said her daughter has often come back to Lampang to visit and help her out but had never told her who the father of the child was.

The scandal unfolded when Film Tokongsap initially refused to admit the affair and demanded a paternity test. He has finally relented and agreed to take responsibility for the child after RS Productions halted all of his projects.


Influenza on the rise as cool season approaches

Chiang Mai Mail reporters

Influenza is predicted to rise as the cool season approaches Dr. Surasing Wisarutrat, Deputy Chief of the Chiang Mai Provincial Public Health office reported. He added that August alone saw 60 patients admitted to the hospital and that September had seen about one hundred. He warned that at least 8 patients had already died from the flu since the beginning of the year. The province has 60,000 flu vaccines available for high risk patients.

The Public Health Office has issued public warnings and sent letters to educational institutes to warm them on the proper measures for avoiding the spread of the flu.

Chiang Mai and China sign cooperation agreement

The Foreign Language and Culture Faculty of Chengdu University in China signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Chiang Mai Chamber of Commerce, for further cooperation to further develop the teach of Thai language’ at the University in China. Ms. Du Jie, Deputy Dean of the Foreign Language and Cultural Faculty of Chengdu University and Mr. Narong Kongprasert , the President of the Chiang Mai Chamber of Commerce signed the agreement at the Le Meriden Hotel in Chiang Mai on September 23 as part of the Chiang Mai GMS seminar and fair 2010. The Chamber of Commerce will be the center for selecting Thai students and staff to work at the University in China.

UDD Rally at Municipal Stadium

UDD members demonstrated on September 19, marching from Tha Pae Gate to the Municipal stadium where they held a rally set to commemorate the fourth anniversary of the 2006 coup. 400 policemen stood guard but the rally went off with no disturbances.

Floods in Mae Taman valley prompt flood warning

Mayor Tassanai Buranupakorn issued a flood warning on September 28 as the city prepared for high water surging down the river after flooding at Mae Taman Valley. Soldiers from Kawila Army Camp prepared sandbags for area residents in case the river overflowed its banks. As much as 3.8 meters had been predicted to reach the city, but the water levels began dropping and the crisis was averted. (Photo by Supoj Thaimyoj)

New U.S. Consul General visits Expats Club

Reminder to vote!

By Shana Kongmun

Susan Stevenson, the new U.S. Consul General, along with Consular Chief Andrew Vrepek and Security Chief Corey Ford paid a visit to the Chiang Mai Expats Club on September 25 to discuss the upcoming election and absentee voting as well as for the new Consul General to introduce herself to members of the club.

U.S. Consul General Susan Stevenson talks about her visit to Chiang Mai in the 90’s with the drug eradication program, flying to villages in the mountains to cut down poppy plants and replace them with vegetable crops.

She told everyone that she was first posted to Thailand in 1994 as Press Attache and had always wanted to come back, “Thailand is the kind of place that stays with you.”

She informed the crowd that the U.S. Embassy estimates around 19-20,000 U.S. citizens resident in Thailand with an estimated 7,000 of those in the North.

She listed the primary concerns for the Consulate in Northern Thailand as well as the Embassy in Bangkok; customs reform, promotion of the creative economy to attract more business and investment to Chiang Mai, drug trafficking, and the need for regional stability and concerns over the tensions with Cambodia and Myanmar. “We look to Thailand to be one of the leaders of regional stability,” Consul General Stevenson added.

Andrew Vrepek came on to discuss the upcoming U.S. elections and the procedures for applying for an absentee ballot, and stressed that each state has different regulations so voters must abide by their state’s laws for absentee voting. He urged voters to visit www.fvap.gov for full information on how to get an absentee ballot.

He noted that voters could mail their absentee ballots in from the U.S. Consulate by October 13, or send it via post. Additionally he stressed to voters that if they had not gotten their absentee ballot by then to download a Federal write in ballot from the same website. He reminded voters that they can register to vote in the state they last resided in, it is not a requirement that you currently reside there. Voting electronically is also available in many states and he suggested to voters that they check to see if their state allows it. He urged voters to get their ballots in early as many states require that the ballot be in the election office on election day, November 2 this year.

Security Chief Corey Ford ended the event stating, “Thailand is considered a low threat for crime and violence. Avoid political demonstrations, and be cautious, but generally, Thailand is very safe.”

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