“I have not received any complaints or any pictures yet, but I will send some officers to check on the beach right now,” he told The Phuket News earlier today (Oct 5).
Mr Ma-ann explained that even the large sign in one of the photos – explaining the beach-management rules – was no indicator of whether or not the beach chairs and umbrellas pictured were located inside one of the “10-per-cent” areas where they are allowed, or outside.
“Some of the 10% areas run parallel to the section of beach furthest from the water, so if the sun beds and umbrellas pictured were along this ‘back area’ of the beach, they might be legal,” Mr Ma-ann said.
“If the vendors are in one of the 10% areas, then they have the right to be there, but if they are not, we will have to talk with them and ask them to leave.”
Meanwhile, the remaining beachfront businesses at Cherng Talay have for now won a temporary stay of execution on any outstanding demolition orders.
Mr Ma-ann today told The Phuket News that he would not take any further action until the new Phuket Governor, Chamroen Tipayapongthada, has given his “opinion” on whether or not the beach demolitions should continue.
And Lt Col Sompop Kamkana of the Royal Thai Navy, who has led most of the beach building demolitions, confirmed to The Phuket News today that the Navy will not join any demolitions unless Mr Ma-ann approved them.
Gov Chamroen arrived on the island last Thursday (Oct 1). Earlier today he told The Phuket News that he would not make any decisions on the beach-management rules until he has consulted with top military officers on the island and been brought up to speed on all the beach rules (see story here), which introduced by previous Governor Nisit Jansomwong on January 29. (See story here.)