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Their leader, Palat Jantarasopin, head of the Tourism Service Operators Club, explained, “We met former Governor Maitri Inthusut [three months ago], but we have not yet met Gov Nisit. We wanted to hand him a copy of the same letter we gave to Gov Maitri so that he understands our problems and needs.”
“It has been almost six months since we lost our jobs [due to the Army-mandated clean-up of Phuket’s beaches], but our monthly bills, car payment, mortgages and our children’s education costs remain the same,” he added.
Gov Nisit accepted the letter and committed himself to finding the best solution for all of the island’s beach vendors as soon as possible.
Manus Yenjit, a beach chair operator, told The Phuket News, “In the past, we cooperated fully with local officials in order to arrange our beach chairs properly, and I think our management was the best of any beach in Phuket.
“If officials want to ask us to explain what good management of beach chairs involves, we are happy to them them. I hope this will be the final solution for us all living together,” he said.
“It’s already high season in Phuket. I think officials should made a clear decision whether or not beach chairs operators can work in our zone,” he added.
The Phuket News has learned that just two days before the beach operators went ot meet the governor, summonses were issued by Karon Police to 114 former beach operators to answer charges of public area encroachment.