City mourns the passing of HRH Princess Galyani
Pattaya citizens have been queuing at Pattaya City Hall to sign a book of
condolences following the passing of Her Royal Highness Princess Galyani
Vadhana on January 2.
Mayor Niran Wattanasartsathorn together with senior city administrators
signed their names on January 3, when the book was opened.
shops were busy making frames for pictures of HRH Princess Galyani Vadhana.
Niran said that Pattaya City Hall was observing the mourning period
alongside official institutions throughout the nation. Officials are wearing
black clothes and the flag is being flown at half-mast for 15 days.
Pol Col Nopadol Wongnom, superintendent at Pattaya Police Station said the
flag above the police station would be raised at half-mast for 15 days.
Private businesses and entertainment outlets will close for a period of
mourning, and a declaration regarding the length of mourning for the private
sector was anticipated soon.
In Chonburi Province a condolence book was placed in Chonburi City Hall for
government officials and members of the public, and a scripted prayer
ceremony was arranged for the period January 3 to 9 at the Pakdeepaendin
Pavilion. Governor of Chonburi Pracha Taerat directed government officials
to wear black clothing for 15 days.
have been selling white and black clothing, with most customers being
working people and government personnel.
Most members of the public have been wearing white and black clothes, and
tourists have also been wearing these colors out of respect to the Thai
people. Vendors at Naklua Market have been selling white and black clothing
with prices starting at 199 baht, with most customers being working people
and government personnel. Even the tailor shops have been kept busy, with
people bringing their white and black clothes in for repair.
Pol Plaimas, the owner of a well known picture framing shop in Naklua said
that many people have been coming in to buy pictures of Her Royal Highness,
either for their offices or for their homes.
Pattaya citizens queue at city
hall to sign a book of condolences following
the passing of Her Royal Highness Princess Galyani Vadhana.
Protests against Tesco Express turn ugly as crowd burns coffin
Feelings ran high amongst local shop owners on December 28 as they
gathered to burn a coffin in protest at the proposed opening of Pattaya’s
first Tesco Lotus Express outlet.
protesters burn a coffin and cardboard people in effigy, trying to chase
Tesco Lotus away from their neighborhood.
More than 100 protestors congregated with picket signs in front of the Tesco
Express outlet on Sukhumvit Road at Central Pattaya, with their leaders
whipping up emotions by saying that the authorities were allowing the store
to open against the wishes of the local shopkeepers.
Protests have been held against the opening of the store on several
occasions, and the local shop owners have been told the situation is being
examined. Construction work on the store was halted briefly, but there has
been no final resolution to the situation.
The protest this time became an angry one, with the crowd shouting out
against Tesco Lotus and questioning the impartiality of the local
Finally, a paper coffin was burned symbolically and officers from Banglamung
Police Station had to move in to keep the situation under control.
It took three hours for the protestors to disband, but before they did they
vowed to continue their demonstrations until the store project is cancelled.
They have also said they would submit a complaint to Pol Gen Saereepisuth
Taemeeyaves, commissioner general of the Royal Thai Police, as they believe
the decision making process has not been an impartial one.
Prayers held for Navy personnel in the troubled South
Prayers were said for the
lives and protection
of personnel working in the troubled South.
Six Combat Marines fired a ceremonial volley of 19 shots and 999
firecrackers were exploded in a ceremony on December 27 in honor of the
Father of the Royal Thai Navy, Prince Krom Luang Chumporn Ketudomsak.
Vice Admiral Suwit Thararoop, commander-in-chief of the Royal Thai Marine
Corps at Sattahip led officers and men in prayers at the Prince Chumpron
Shrine on Mount Laem Poochao for the New Year.
Vice Admiral Suwit said that while the nation celebrates the birth of the
New Year, the armed forces are unable to participate in the revels because
of their duty to protect the country at all times. But such a duty is a high
honor, he said, and every serving man or woman is aware of this.
Prayers were said for the lives and protection of personnel working in the
troubled South, and blessings were said for the spirit of the man who
created the modern Royal Thai Navy, Prince Chumporn.
New landing stages at Bali Hai Pier will cost 8.3M baht
A budget of more
than 8.3 million baht will be used to replace landing stages at Bali Hai
pier that are dilapidated because of rust.
Pattaya City councilors have approved a budget of 8.3 million baht
to build four landing stages at Bali Hai Pier, following the closure earlier
of the existing stages because of their advanced state of deterioration.
The budget was approved at a Pattaya City Hall meeting on December 27,
presided over by council chairman Tawit Chaisawangwong.
A amount of 8,337,000 baht was agreed on for the four landing stages at Bali
Hai Pier, the decision having been made as a matter of priority because of
the condition of the existing landing stages that were considered to have
reached a dangerous state of dilapidation.
Members of the council expressed concern about the materials to be used for
the new landing stages, and asked if they would be more durable than the
previous installations. Pichet Uthaiwattananon, director of the Pattaya City
Engineering Office said that the material to be used would be processed
galvanized steel plating made from high-tensile G550 steel. This would be
far more durable than the material previously used, which had rusted after
only two years’ service.
Pichet said the new landing stages would be guaranteed for two years, and
that the Pattaya Sea Rescue Department would be responsible for the
maintenance of the landing stages.
Stage shows cancelled for Chinese New Year as Pattaya mourns HRH Princess Galyani
Stage performances will not be held during Chinese New Year in
Pattaya out of respect for the memory of Her Royal Highness Princess Galyani
Vadhana, who passed away on January 2.
Charoenpol, chief of the Pattaya
However, Wutipol Charoenpol, chief of the Pattaya City Office said that
other Chinese New Year festivities would take place over the period February
5 to 6, and that a company had been appointed to make the arrangements.
A meeting was held on January 3 at Pattaya City Hall to discuss the Cabinet
resolution issued in the immediate aftermath of the passing of Her Royal
Highness. The resolution was for government and private organizations to
hold a total of 100 days of mourning. Government officials must mourn for 15
days, and there is an agreement that all government organizations postpone
or cancel the holding of entertainment performances for 15 days, or a total
period of 100 days. If it is not important to hold performances, then they
should not be held. The government has invited people to mourn by wearing
black clothes for a total of 15 days.
To observe the mourning period, Pattaya City has agreed to cancel the
holding of stage performances during Chinese New Year, but areas of the city
will be lit with Chinese lanterns, and lion dancers will perform.
February 6 will be a day of prayer for the Chinese community, and will be
observed only at the Sawang Boriboon Thammasathan Foundation.
Pattaya City will cooperate with the Tourism Authority of Thailand Central
Region 3 in rearranging a planned stage show with performers from the
People’s Republic of China.
Christmas Day was a dog’s dinner for the strays
Stray dogs in Sattahip receive
a treat on Christmas.
Vice Admiral Sirichai Kanithakul, chief of operations at the Naval
Operations Department and who is also head of the department’s Stray Dogs
Aid Center Project, organized a special feeding of the dogs on Christmas
Captain Nopadol Supakorn, commander of the Naval Operations Support Division
was assigned to arrange for officers and employees to bring beef, pork and
chicken to feed the stray dogs at the center, which is located at Sattahip.
The Naval Operations Department has been operating the center for two years
and has recently worked together with head of the Sattahip Administrative
Organization Pairoj Malakul na Ayutthaya to build kennels.
Currently there are 134 dogs at the center, 59 of them males and 75 females.
The funds for looking after them, treating them for sickness, feeding them
daily, and maintaining them comes from the donations of kindhearted people.
Vice Admiral Sirichai said that stray dogs can be dangerous, and that rabies
is always a potential threat. Even in the course of everyday life the dogs
can present a danger, particularly when they stray into the road. As the
Navy has responsibility for the security of this area and for those visiting
the Navy Base and its activities, the Naval Operations Department founded
the Stray Dogs Aid Center. The officers care of the animals.
Foundation stone for
sailing monument to be laid soon
City hall is preparing to lay the foundation stone for a monument
that will commemorate the importance sailing has for Pattaya, and the role
played by His Majesty the King in encouraging Thai people to take part in
Designers and members of the public were asked to submit proposals for the
design, and these were judged on December 4, 2006. Miss Piyarat Sripat was
the winner of the competition.
Deputy Mayor Ronakit Ekasingh said that His Majesty the King, a keen sailor,
had taken part in the 4th Southeast Asian Peninsular Games in 1967,
participating in a sailboat race with Her Royal Highness Princess
Ubolratana, and had won a gold medal.
Construction of this monument would act as a continual encouragement to Thai
people to take part in this sport, and the structure would act as an
important landmark for visitors to Pattaya.
The monument will be built on the beach in front of Mike Shopping Mall, with
the foundation stone due to be laid early this year.
Construction of the monument will, however, have to wait a little longer, as
it requires a large amount that cannot be managed during Mayor Niran’s term.
Only the foundation stone can be laid to prepare for construction, and the
new team of administrators will continue the project.
arrested with drugs haul
Police have arrested the transvestite leader of a bizarre drugs gang
whose members included two women and whose favored method of transporting
their goods was to tape the packages to their stomachs to make it look as if
they were pregnant.
leader and two accomplices of the “pregnant transvestite” gang are paraded
before the media.
A press briefing was held at Pattaya Police Station on December 28 during
which station superintendent Pol Col Nopadol Wongnom and deputy
superintendent of crime suppression Pol Lt Col. Supachat Piemmanat presented
the three gang members to the media, along with a haul of the drugs they had
The leader of the gang was identified as Taweesak Kammul, also known as May,
an 18-year-old transvestite from Chiang Rai Province who was arrested at
Suanthiwaree Village on the Thappraya Road Detour along with 1,956 pills of
ya ba that were hidden in his underwear. Taweesak confessed that he had
received the drugs from a dealer in Chiang Rai, and that he had taken ya ba
with him on domestic airline flights many times. When he transported the
drugs he was dressed in women’s clothes and put the packages into his
underwear, or wrapped them in cloth and taped them to his stomach. The drugs
were sold in Pattaya City to gang members who then sold the pills to
The other two accused were Miss Muay Chinsri, 39, of Nakornpanom Province,
and Miss Wariya Chaikrao, 37, of Ratchaburi Province. A police undercover
officer had arrested them in the street next to Pattaya Memorial Hospital.
They had 1,200 tabs of ya ba that was placed in a plastic bag that was
wrapped with tape, and were in a baht bus ready to deliver the drugs when
they were arrested.
Police have extended their investigations to pursue other members of the
gang, which they know is a large operator in the North.
Fire breaks out
at Korean karaoke bar
Fire caused considerable
damage to the interior of a Korean karaoke bar
in North Pattaya.
Three fire engines raced to put out a blaze at a Korean karaoke bar opposite
Fairtex in North Pattaya during the morning of December 28.
Firefighters found smoke pouring from the one-story building, but it took
them only 10 minutes to get the fire under control. Considerable damage was
done to the interior of the building, an initial estimate putting the cost
at 100,000 baht.
Siripol Tabtim, the 28-year-old security guard at the premises said that he
was on duty and sitting out in front. He heard the sound of sparks and fire,
and saw smoke coming out of the shop. He immediately telephoned Mr Lee
(unknown surname), the owner of the shop, and called police officers for
During the primary investigation officers surmised that the fire was caused
by a short circuit. A fire investigator will, however, examine the scene
once again to produce a report.
Norwegian beaten unconscious by thugs at beer bar
A Norwegian tourist was beaten and badly injured by a gang of Thai men at a
group of beer bars in the early hours of December 30, the attackers stealing
the man’s property and leaving him unconscious as they rode away on their
Pattaya Police Station received a report of the incident at 2:30 a.m. from
an anonymous caller, and rushed to the Wonderful Beer Bar group of bars
alongside Second Road.
There are 15 beer bars located on an area of about 10 rai of land, with a
stand of trees to the rear of the bars. The officers found a number of
tourists drinking, and more than 200 bargirls who appeared unaware that
anything had happened. Amongst the trees at the rear of the bars, however,
police found the unconscious figure of a man. He was identified as Geir
Andre Sirevag, a 26-year-old Norwegian citizen.
The ground was covered in blood. Sirevag, who was shaven-headed, had traces
of blood at the base of his left ear from a wound, and there was a swelling
on his head. The area above his left ear had an indentation and his eyebrow
was bleeding. His body was bruised. The officers with great difficulty
carried him out by his arms and legs, and sent him for treatment to Pattaya
Police attempted to question eyewitnesses at the scene, but no one was
willing to speak. Later, however, one witness spoke in secret. A Thai man
described as being short and overweight had come to the bars with three
associates. Everyone was afraid of them. The gang had a problem with the
Norwegian man, and they surrounded him and beat him until he was unconscious
before carrying him out and throwing him into the trees 20 meters away. They
took all his property, then came back to their motorcycles that were parked
in front of the bars and calmly rode away. A woman who officers suspect was
a beer bar staff member called the police.
Pol Col Nopadol Wongnom, superintendent at Pattaya Police Station has
ordered a full investigation of all the bar staff members.
Two die in
Soi Post Office blaze
Two people died in a fire at a guesthouse on Soi Post Office during
the morning of December 29.
Three fire engines from Pattaya City Fire Department rushed to the Annie Bar
building at 9:15 a.m. along with rescue workers from the Sawang Boriboon
Niks, who narrowly escaped, watches anxiously as firefighters extinguish the
fire. His comrade perished in the blaze.
Watched by a large crowd of Thais and foreigners, the firemen sprayed water
over the building to prevent the flames spreading along the street. It was
30 minutes before the fire could be extinguished.
Two people were found dead on the third floor. They were named as Ravi Kant
Gupta, a 23-year-old Indian national who had collapsed on the floor; and Mrs
Jampee Jaitrong, a 33-year-old resident of Nakorn Ratchasima province, who
worked at the Annie Bar. She died naked in the bathroom.
Mrs Paijit Wangkamlun, the 33-year-old manager of the bar said that Gupta
had arrived the previous evening with an Indian friend, 24-year-old Garg
Niks. The deceased was drunk and had taken Jampee upstairs.
Officers discovered that the fire began in the sauna room on the second
floor. Gupta had opened the sauna door but had fallen asleep. He and Jampee
had died from suffocation, while Niks had been able to escape.
Fire investigation officers will prepare an official report.
for hospital transporter
Pipat and Mrs Rasri
Rattanaprakarn, the owners of
the Phurimas Beach Hotel and Spa at Payoon Beach, Ban Chang, in Rayong,
donate a six seat electric cart to Rear Admiral Nikorn Petweerakul,
the Naval Medical Department at Sattahip..
Patcharapol Panrak, Sattahip District
A six-seat electrical cart has been donated to Somdej
Phranangchaosirlkit Hospital as a New Year gift.
The cart, valued at 340,000 baht, was presented on December 28 by Pipat and
Mrs Rasri Rattanaprakarn, the owners of the Phurimas Beach Hotel and Spa at
Payoon Beach, Ban Chang, in Rayong.
Receiving the donation on behalf of the hospital, which comes under the
Naval Medical Department at Sattahip, was Rear Admiral Nikorn Petweerakul.
Speaking at the presentation ceremony held in front of the patients’
registration building, Pipat said the Somdej Phranangchaosirlkit Hospital
was a long established one, and as a large military hospital it helps
disaster victims throughout the Eastern region. As the region has developed
into a large industrial conurbation, so the hospital’s medical services have
expanded. However, the number of carts available to transport patients
between departments that are as much as 300 meters apart had been
insufficient, hence the decision he and Rasri had made to donate a new one.
Donations had been collected to make up the total required sum of 340,000
baht to buy the six-seat electrical cart. This was done as a New Year gift
for the hospital and its patients.
Giant image taken to devotees
The abbot of Samakkee Banpot Temple in Bangsarae, Prah Khru Kasem
Kittisophon, invited devotees to pay homage to the image of Somdej
Prabuddhacharn To as it was being paraded through the streets on December
Khru Kasem Kittisophon invites people to pay homage to the image of Somdej
Prabuddhacharn To during a parade on December 28.
The image, which stands 9ft 1in high, is the largest in Eastern Thailand and
was erected through the efforts of the abbot.
Amongst the senior Buddhist priests attending Samakkee Banpot Temple were
Phra Khru Wibunthammabal, ecclesiastical district officer of Sattahip and
abbot of Sattahip Temple, Phra Khru Thammasarasophit, Phra Khru
Pipitcholatham, abbot of Najomtien Temple, Chao Khun Bowornrangsi, deputy
abbot of Rakang Kositaram Temple in Bangkok, and another 10 priests from
temples in the Eastern region of Thailand.
Prah Khru Kasem Kittisophon said that many Thai and foreign people came to
worship at the temple and at the image of Somdej Prabuddhacharn To, who had
been a revered monk and whose image was created by peoples’ faith and
Blessings and bonuses as city hall completes successful year
Administration praised by Chonburi Province committee
secretary Sittiprap Muangkhum (center) leads officials in bringing New Years
blessings to Mayor Niran Wattanasartsathorn.
More than 300 government officials and employees of Pattaya City
joined a ceremony at the King Taksin Monument on January 1 to give New Year
blessings to the mayor and his deputies.
Permanent secretary Sittiprap Muangkhum represented the city officials as he
presented an address blessing the head of the administration and wishing him
and his deputies health and success during the year to come.
Mayor Niran Wattanasartsathorn in return gave his blessings to all city
officials and workers, urging them to take care of their health and well
being so that they may perform their official duties happily and with
success. Niran compared the work of city officials to that of a cog in a
machine: no matter if the cog is large or small, it has an important purpose
and without it the machine cannot work properly.
All employees received a one-month bonus from the mayor, who said that the
administration had functioned well during the year and had passed an
evaluation undertaken by a Chonburi Province committee headed by the deputy
A fond farewell as Fr Paiboon moves to the North
Father Paiboon Udomdet has bid a fond farewell to St. Nikolaus
Church, where he has been pastor for two years, as he prepared to move to
Chiang Mai, where he will work with a Mission that covers the North and
Weera Phangrak (right), deputy patriarch from the Mission in Chantaburi,
blesses Fr Paiboon (left) with white string as Fr Kritsada Sukapat (center)
A party was held at St Nikolaus Church on December 28 to wish Fr Paiboon
well in his new endeavors, and also to welcome Fr Kritsada Sukapat, who will
replace him. Fr Weera Phangrak, deputy patriarch from the Mission in
Chantaburi and Ronakit Ekasingh, Pattaya City deputy mayor, presented the
farewell and welcome speeches.
Fr Paiboon was born on March 26, 1960. He entered the priesthood on April 7,
1988, and was the 12th pastor at St Nikolaus. He graduated with a doctorate
in moral theology from Rome in 2006, and can speak seven languages.
At the farewell party, Fr Paiboon’s wrist was bound with a blessing in
accordance with traditional Thai beliefs.
Children’s Day will feature fun and education
City hall is preparing for a
good Children’s Day this year.
A busy day is planned in Pattaya for Children’s Day, January 12, with every
department within the educational system being encouraged to prepare
Deputy Mayor Wattana Chantanawaranon held a meeting on December 18 at
Pattaya City Hall to prepare the program, along with representatives of the
10 schools under the city’s jurisdiction.
Wattana said that Children’s Day in Pattaya is traditionally a very active
one, and has always received good cooperation from the government and
private offices. This year every department within the educational system is
being requested to devise activities that are both educational and
Pattaya City Hall will itself be open to the children so that they can see
how local government is conducted. Escorted groups will be taken around the
various departments, ending with a visit to the office of Mayor Niran
Rotary Club Eastern Seaboard welcomes guests from Germany
Karl and Stephanie Krafft are
surrounded by the group
for a souvenir shot at Garden Cafe.
The Rotary Club Eastern Seaboard had some visitors from Germany over
the Christmas period. In absence of president Stefan Ryser, past president
Marliese Fritz welcomed the past president of Rotary Club Bergheim-Erft,
Karl Krafft, and his spouse Stephanie, who both came to Pattaya for several
Dr Claus Rink of RC Eastern Seaboard, who also is a teacher in Germany, had
earlier convinced his fellow RC members from his home country on the idea of
a producing an English language CD for Thai students. Both clubs set up a
matching grant to produce this CD. Several hundred copies have now been
distributed throughout the Eastern Seaboard. Last year, several students
from Germany traveled to Thailand to teach and promote the CD.
RC Eastern Seaboard invited Karl and Stephanie Krafft to a dinner on
December 30 at the Marriott Resort’s Garden Cafe. Earnest conversations
about a planned partnership between both Rotary Clubs were held. It is
assumed that the talks will end in June with the signing of a co-operation.
For this occasion, several members of the RC Bergheim-Erft will travel to
The Krafft couple has been visiting Thailand and other Asian countries
numerous times. A day after the talks, they flew to Cambodia to visit the
historic site of Angkor Wat.