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Paiboon Upatising, back at the Phuket Provincial Administrative Organisation

Court Rules Out Vote Buying: Paiboon Jets Back

Tuesday, September 8, 2009
THE Chief Executive of the Phuket Provincial Administrative Organisation, Paiboon Upatising, has been cleared of allegations of vote-buying at his election, a court ruled today.

The Appeals Court verdict was delivered at 10.30am in Bangkok, bringing to an end to the suspension of Phuket's most senior elected administrator.

Recently back from a trip overseas, Khun Paiboon was in Bangkok for the verdict and is expected to start work again in his key role on Phuket tomorrow.

He won the election over Anchalee Wanichthepphabutr on April 20 last year. Then he was given a '''yellow card'' by the Electoral Commission over vote-buying allegations, which meant he had to stand aside until today's court decision.

Khun Paiboon remained confident he would be cleared, and that he could then continue his plan for progress and changes in many aspects of Phuket life over his four-year term.

Khun Anchalee, now a deputy secretary to the Prime Minister, remains an influential figure in local life.

Khun Piaboon said at the time of his suspension that various projects would continue, regardless of whether or not he was overseeing them.

''Phuket has many issues that require cooperation so that answers can be found,'' he told Phuketwan.

''The national government needs to help with big projects and provide budgets for an international conference centre and an IT city.

''Improving the roads also should have national government help.''

Tourism: Tourists need better service, he said. Phuket has to encourage natural tourism but more activities and more festivals, as well as international sport and music, were also essential. Public monument 'fountain music,' involving tunes and watersprays set in time to dance music, was one real possibility, he said. He plans to talk to administrators in Patong, Kamala and other places to develop international festival ideas. Sport could work in the same way, he said.

Phuket City: The island's capital needed activities all the time, he said. Tourists should find plenty of fun things to enjoy. Natural attractions were great but tourists needed more. The extended New Year countdown to 2009, with concerts every night leading up to New Year's Eve, had worked well and would be repeated every year, he added. International jazz and other events could help to revitalise Phuket City, he said.

Water supply: The island's long-term needs need to be resolved now, not later, he said. Droughts and water shortages were not something Phuket had to endure when there were already ways of capturing and using more rainwater.

Facilities: More public parks would be a positive for Phuket, he said, especially with good facilities. CCTV provided security and helped to make tourists feel safe. Fountains in the city (with music) will be coming soon, he said. Open-air old-style buses will be returned to duty, to add timeless character that the present city bus service lacked. They will be free, he said, for everyone, just as they are free for students now.

Environment: Everyone needed to become involved to prevent the local environment deteriorating, he said. Protecting the coral reefs was part of the Orborjor budget plan, along with creating more artificial reefs. Turtle conservation was essential, with other marine life also in need of protection.

Orborjor Hospital: Renovations were continuing on the old Phyathai Hospital building in Phuket City, close to Koh Sireh. The idea is to provide low-cost care for more residents, he said, especially for the elderly. The regenerated hospital should be finished in early 2010, he added. The hospital's philosophy will be about prevention rather than treatment, in an attempt to reduce the workload at Vachira Hospital.

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Phuket Worker Suffers Heightened Mondayitis
Dramatic Photos A Phuket airport worker decides to settle his differences with his colleagues . . . by climbing a power pole and threatening to jump. And that's where he spent the morning.
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Phuket Airport 'Crash' To Stir Tragic Memories
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Latest Backing for more overseas investment on Phuket has come from the powerful Thai military with a rear admiral who also has tourism connections revealing statistics on cash sources.
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Tuesday October 27, 2020
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