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Phuket business powerhouses donate B10mn for ‘Phuket Smart Check Point’ system

Phuket business powerhouses donate B10mn for ‘Phuket Smart Check Point’ system

PHUKET: Phuket business leaders have donated B10 million for police to install a high-tech checking system at the Phuket Check Point in Tha Chatchai to help prevent any persons infected with COVID-19, or under observation on suspicion of being infected with the virus, from leaving the island.

By Eakkapop Thongtub

Wednesday 13 May 2020, 01:34PM

Sombat Atiset addresses the press at the donation ceremony. Photo: Eakkapop Thongtub

Sombat Atiset addresses the press at the donation ceremony. Photo: Eakkapop Thongtub

A ceremony to mark the donation was held  on Monday afternoon (May 11) at the Phuket Check Point, where all people leaving the island to return to their home provinces are screened and verified as authorised to leave Phuket with a “Fit to Travel” permit.

Present at the ceremony was Phuket Provincial Police Chief Maj Gen Rungrote Thakurapunyasiri and the six key donors, or their representatives: Sombat Atiset, CEO of Kata Thani hotels, who donated B5mn; along with Kata Group founder and President Pramookpisitt Achariyachai along with Tunyaratt Achariyachai, who has also previously served for years as the Chair of the Senate committee for Tourism, who together donated B1mn.

Also present were Wilaiporn Pitimanaaree, representing of Central Group; Benjawan Tampanuwat, President of the Phuket chapter of the Kusoldharm Foundation, and Natthakanya Saengpho, CEO of Paradise Group and Andara Resort Residence. All three also donated B1mn each.

A further B1mn was provided by the Phuket branch of the Police Audit and Monitoring Committee.

The project, branded “Phuket Smart Check Point”, will instill confidence that no people suspected of being infected with COVID-19 will be allowed to leave Phuket, Gen Rungrote said.

The project will see better body-temperature screening capabilities at the checkpoint, and will feature face and licence plate recognition capabilities to identify any persons identified as infected with the virus, or even recorded by officials as a Person Under Observation (PUI).

UWC Thailand

“We have a group of officers to do the work, but it will take less time with more effective results by using the technology,” Gen Rungrote said.

The mass exodus of people leaving Phuket to return to their home provinces has renewed fears of a resurgence of COVID-19 infections after four new infections were found on the island on Sunday (May 10), prompting the government to ramp up disease control measures to screen returnees heading to their homes from the island province.

Taweesilp Visanuyothin, spokesman of the Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) said on Sunday that Phuket remains under close watch because between 10,000-20,000 people have left since the nationwide lockdown was eased on May 3.

Phuket Governor Phakaphong Tavipatana last estimated the number of people who have registered to leave the island to be “about 50,000”.


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harald | 14 May 2020 - 11:54:48

the flu hype is over since days but some people acting as a new flu is coming soon. for them i recommend to call this flu virus than covid20 what bring people too in fear and panic never heard about flu 

Kurt | 14 May 2020 - 11:53:16

An large mysterious donation for something that will stop soon, as the departures of Thai from Phuket will dry up soon. And why is it only for checking departures and not also arrivals when that start be be allowed again?  What favours are expected in return from the government? When will this system be installed? After all 50,000 Thai left? Where is the system stored now?

Sir Burr | 14 May 2020 - 07:41:50

How totally tone deaf can you be?
The ordinary people have lost the jobs and are losing anything that was bought on credit.
So much for Thai Rak Thai.

Rorri_2 | 13 May 2020 - 16:32:19

"10,000-20,000 people have left since the nationwide lockdown was eased on May 3," so they don't really know how many left, what happened to the other 30,000 to 40,000 registered to leave..  a lso 4 new cases recently, from different areas, of Phuket, ok, but where were they infected, surely it didn't just fall out of the sky.

LALALA | 13 May 2020 - 14:17:41

They donating 10million THB in a surveillance system when cases in Thailand are at 1 digit and very low according to applauding politicians... why the not donate the 10mio THB to their countrymen who suffer from unemployment.... what interest they have to support government surveillance....

LALALA | 13 May 2020 - 14:14:02

And here you go..... tracking and control measures being set up, I recommend to read about the so called 14day app in Chiang Mai...another tracking device...and this is just the beginning...


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