PM Prayut orders agencies to address floods, water shortages

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BANGKOK – The Prime Minister and Defense Minister, Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha, has ordered the Royal Thai Army and relevant agencies promptly to assist people affected by floods and water shortages in different areas of the country. The Prime Minister is to visit the drought-hit province of Chaiyaphum next week.

The Prime Minister assigned officials to monitor the flood situation in Narathiwat closely. He expressed concern for the people following continuous heavy rain in the southern border province. Water levels in the Sai Buri, Bang Nara and Su-ngai Kolok rivers have risen, flooding many houses for the second time. Gen. Prayut instructed government agencies and the army to provide assistance to those affected. The flood situation has so far affected 37,000 people in five districts of Narathiwat.

The Prime Minister said a drought has been declared in 12 provinces. The Ministry of Interior and the army are to survey areas and collect water data to help manage water for consumption and irrigation. They are to excavate ponds and canals to access underground sources of water to distribute to people in drought-hit areas, particularly those living outside irrigation zones.

The Prime Minister encouraged farmers to switch to crops which require less water or to halt their farming activities at this time and follow the government’s advice. Members of the public can help by using less water.

The Prime Minister is to visit the northeastern province of Chaiyaphum on December 25, 2019, to follow up on the drought situation.