Thai government urges patience among Chana protestors as public forums progress


The government is now asking those affected by the Chana Industrial Estate project to be patient as the government proceeds with public forums to gather more input on the project and the issues people have to deal with.

A group of people impacted by the Chana Industrial Estate project took to the Government House last night and were met with crowd control officers.

A young activist, Kaireeyah Ramanyah, today led a group of around 10 people to read out their demands and urged the government to comply with them, saying they were only protecting their own rights and land.

Ms. Kaireeyah said they would not leave the protest site until their calls are answered.

Deputy Prime Minister Gen Prawit Wongsuwan has confirmed the government is now making progress with the protestors’ demands.

He asked the protestors who may want swift answers to give the government more time to carry out public forums, a process that can be lengthy.

The Cabinet in 2019 approved the industrial zoning of Chana district in Songkhla as part of the country’s special economic zone (SEZ) project.

The rezoning of the area from a green agriculture-only zone to a purple zone has raised concerns among some villagers, who felt that previous public hearings did not take into consideration their input.

The protestors have staged several activities that led to a negotiation with the government last year, in which the government promised to slow down the project and consider the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) before rollout.

This round of protests is taking place once again in front of the Government House, as the protestors demand clarification of the government’s SEA plan. (NNT)