''Stick by the rules,'' the governor said. ''Be strong. Phuket's problem is influence from the private sector. The island needs authorities in charge.''
Almost at the last minute, he revealed that he had cancelled the controversial land title for Freedom beach. The deed, worth billions for a resort development, had been approved by one of his predecessors.
Criminal charges are pending.
Incoming governor Jamleran Tipayapongtada remained non-controversial on his first day today, meeting the media at Phuket Provincial Hall.
He undertook to proceed with construction of a new provincial hall to replace the one that has been in use for decades and remains too small for an island the size of Phuket.
He also said he would make a priority of upgrading and maintaining the tsunami warning system.
A total of 5400 tourists and residents lost their lives along the Andaman coast in 2004.
The belief that eternal vigilance is required to prevent another disaster is embraced by some and ignored by others.