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Bangkok will come to Phuket's assistance if corruption reforms look like failing

Phuket Corruption Push to be 'Role Model'

Friday, June 17, 2011
PHUKET: Phuket's attempt to confront corruption continued this week as the island-province officially became the ''guinea pig'' for moves to make all of Thailand safer and fairer for tourists.

Phuket should become a case study for what needs to change and how change can be achieved, a meeting of senior administration representatives from Phuket, Bangkok, Pattaya Samui and Chiang Mai heard in the capital.

Heading the meeting was the Deputy Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Interior, Prania Suwanrath, who was given the task of driving reforms by now-caretaker Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva.

Vice Governor Niwit Aroonrat, who is representing Phuket at the rolling series of meetings, told Phuketwan that Phuket authorities should press ahead in the areas that need reform.

''If support is needed from Bangkok, it will come,'' said Khun Prania.

Transport is at the head of the list of Phuket's problems. Vice Governor Niwit said that there were issues at the airport, at the deep sea port, at Kata-Karon and in Patong.

The airport alone was complicated enough with meter taxis, limousines, government buses, ''black'' illegal taxis and hotel vans all part of the mix.

The five general areas that are being looked at are: Rip-offs and transport, including tuk-tuks and jet-skis; Tailors and touts and the use of high-pressure street sales techniques; Traffic and the lack of a strategy for Phuket's growth; Garbage disposal; Local and international tourist guides.

Khun Prania has promised his full support and says the lessons learned from the ''Phuket role model'' should be applied to the other tourism destinations represented at this week's meeting.

Results are also anticipated from a recent two-week investigation by a special committee connected to the Public Sector Anti-Corruption Commission.

Officers interviewed leading figures on Phuket, including expats, and were given details of alleged corruption on Phuket.

Comments

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''If support is needed from Bangkok, it will come,'' said Khun Prania."
Yes right, when hell ices over.
Bangkok has not helped Phuket in the past, so why would they do so now?
Sort out the tuk tuks, taxis, double pricing, jet-skis, etc, then we will believe you.
Talk is cheap.

Posted by Robin on June 18, 2011 01:51

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I'm confused by this story. The problems plaguing Phuket are well documented. However I've yet to see any effective attempt at solving them. The Jetski scams are still going on despite rules requiring them to include insurance in the rental price. The Taxi drivers just won in their attempt to force visiting cruise ship tourists to use taxis instead of prepurchased tour packages. Tuk tuks are still illegally "owning" parking spaces and charging outrageously expensive rates. Its next to impossible to find a metered taxi anywhere on the island.

So just what exactly is this ''Phuket role model'' that the rest of Thailand is supposed to follow?

Posted by Just SomeGuy on June 18, 2011 02:12

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More lip service.
It's only going to get worse before it gets better.

Posted by Glen on June 18, 2011 07:28

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You nailed it 'just some guy'. If this is their idea of solving the problems then I hope Bangkok is on the next high speed rail down here. Nobody should be entitled to business just because they are 'local'. From my experience most are not even from Phuket and don't really care about it's future, just their wallets.

Posted by Off the rails on June 18, 2011 09:53

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And what about the bars and night entertainments that never close at the right time? This is the mother load of the money for support the corrupted people, like PW wrote many times in these pages, cause all for they are coming here is peanuts for who is really corrupted. These are only stupid scams...

Posted by Dave on June 18, 2011 10:15

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Looking at it and solving, it are two different things,action speaks louder than words, but so far for as long as i can remember...no solutions have been found....mainly because of the corruption here....the editor has written articles to the PM etc,but nothing is enforced....why?...

Posted by johndev on June 18, 2011 11:33

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Phuket law-enforcers will start to prosecute:
- First all corrupted civil servants?
- All business-people, Thais and foreigners alike?
- Both of them?
In the case, few honest people will be out of Phuket Hilton Jail.

Posted by Whistle-Blower on June 18, 2011 12:19

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Should I call it the best show and give an Oscar??? The jet ski ban was supposed to start in May this year, but nobody dared to execute it. Give us a break with these make believe campaigns.

Posted by Hockey on June 18, 2011 19:07

Editor Comment:

You're rewriting history here, Hockey. The jet-ski phase out was supposed to happen over seven years. Nobody expected it to suddenly happen in March, given that there had been no scaling back, which was the original intention.

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Ah Thailand nothing ever changes, it'll be the exact same in 10 years from now these scams are making the people with the power in Phuket very very rich and nobody in Bangkok has the stones to stop them and yet another chance will be missed to give Thailand the title corruption free.

Posted by Scunner on June 18, 2011 20:55

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The corruption will only start to be resolved after Government Civil Service employees stop charging additional payments to do their day to day job.

I have today been told that if I do not pay 5000 baht "tea money" my work permit will not be renewed

Blatant abuse like this is the core of the problem here in Thailand

Posted by Anonymous on June 20, 2011 21:13

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Scam start at airport, where Immigration try to get some "tea money" from who has working Visa to give you the right stamp or not fine you for non-existent violations. Otherwise be careful at what they stamp.. could be (intentionally) not correct!!!

Posted by Richard on June 21, 2011 09:17


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