Pattaya Beach vendors protest eviction, but Na Jomtien holds firm

Na Jomtien beach vendors crowded the municipality office to protest the eviction from the beach areas that they occupied to operate their private businesses.

About 300 merchants petitioned Na Jomtien Subdistrict to allow them to sell on the beach after they were kicked out.

The hawkers were protesting the subdistrict’s moves to clear the pedestrian sidewalk on Na Jomtien Beach and Na Jomtien Beach Road. Sellers were evicted as they had taken over the entire sidewalk, blocking access and annoying tourists.

Tharawee Dollaphonchairat, a mango sticky rice seller, said the action jeopardized her and others’ incomes. She complained that the eviction, effective Sunday, came too suddenly.

Jomtien food and drink vendors occupied the public beaches to operate their private enterprises for quite some time.

Subdistrict Mayor Rapeephan Rattanaliem and Sattahip Deputy District Chief Kantapong Suwannaprathumlert accepted their petition, but told the vendors that the municipality had been lenient with the vendors encroachment and appropriation of public property during the pandemic, but that time was over.

He blamed the vendors for their own situation, saying they contributed to problems with garbage, traffic and crime, particularly vendors fighting with each other for space that they didn’t even own or rent.

Jomtien Beach looks clean after authorities evicted all the sidewalk vendors from public property.