100 protest after unfounded rumors of Bali Hai land sale

Friday, 13 December 2013 From Issue Vol. XXI No. 50 By  Theerarak Suthathiwong

Rumors of public land near Bali Hai Pier being sold off to private developers sparked a protest from Pattaya residents who still remember a corruption case involving the waterfront property.

Resident Piya Piyamont, 57, led the Nov. 28 protest by dozens of residents at Bali Hai Pier. They waved placards protesting any sale of public land to private companies and demanded a meeting with city officials.

“This land is not for sale!” Protestors gather near Bali Hai in response to rumors that public land had been sold for commercial use.“This land is not for sale!” Protestors gather near Bali Hai in response to rumors that public land had been sold for commercial use.

The 300 meters of property between the pier and the marine rescue center was the center of a 1998 legal case that had acquired the land from the city. Opponents filed a complaint with the National Anti-Corruption Commission, which brought corruption charges against a number of individuals. Fifteen years later, the case is still in the courts, sitting at the court of appeals level.

Unsubstantiated rumors that the land was now available for private sale again sparked the protest. However, Pattaya Deputy Mayor Ronakit Ekasingh assured the protestors that was not the case. Ronakit said the land is still tied up in the courts and cannot be developed until the suit is completed.

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