Banglamung chief tells Pattaya officials to get back to work on clearing South Pattaya canal

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After getting off to a fast start, work to clear the South Pattaya storm-drainage canal of illegal encroachments has bogged down with some intransigent property owners even building new structures on public land.

Banglamung District Chief Sakchai Taengho summoned Pattaya officials to a Sept. 11 meeting to instruct them to reassert themselves in the effort to remove man-made obstacles along the canal designed to be a pathway for storm runoff to reach the sea.

Four owners are not only ignoring orders to take down their structures along the South Pattaya canal (main photos), but are actually building more (upper right).Four owners are not only ignoring orders to take down their structures along the South Pattaya canal (main photos), but are actually building more (upper right).

As has happened so many times in recent years, Pattaya officials began clearing encroachments with much fanfare, but dropped their effort when the cameras left and encroachers dug in. This time, four property owners are not only ignoring orders to remove their structures, but, as Pattaya officials eased up on pressuring them, are flouting the law by building new obstructions.

Sakchai, who spearheaded the effort during the summer and managed, within weeks, to clear 75 percent of the encroachments, was having none of it. The city government, he warned, was in danger of again being accused of not working to their fullest potential.

He told Pattaya officials and engineers they must speed up their efforts, locate the offenders and bring action against them.