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Phuket Town residents vote to keep ‘Monkey Hill’ alive

PHUKET: Local residents yesterday made their opinion clear for wildlife officials to take steps to control the number of the wild monkeys living on Toh Sae Hill in the heart of Phuket Town, but asked to let the monkeys stay there.

By The Phuket News

Saturday 26 May 2018, 09:45AM

A tourist feeds one of the monkeys at Toh Sae Hill in Phuket Town. Photo: Rassada Municipality

A tourist feeds one of the monkeys at Toh Sae Hill in Phuket Town. Photo: Rassada Municipality

The public-feedback meeting yesterday (May 25) was held at the Chalerm Sammanakit Hall at Wat Charoen Samanakit (Wat Lang San), located behind Phuket Provincial Court, in Phuket Town.

A total of 63 local residents attended, a senior official at the Phuket Provincial Environment Office confirmed to The Phuket News.

As done at the first public hearing on Tuesday (see story here), as a simple way to gauge public opinion on two key issues attendees were asked to vote by a show of hands on two questions:

1) Do you want to the population of the monkeys to be controlled?

2) Do you want you the monkeys to be relocated?

A total of 61 people voted in support of “population control” measures for the monkeys, while one resident disagreed and another abstained from voting.

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Further, 53 of the residents voted to allow the monkeys to stay on the hill. Only one resident supported moving the monkeys to another location, while nine others refrained from casting a vote.

As being done at all the feedback meetings, attendees were also asked to each complete the standard feedback form, which will be used later by officials in determining what should be done with the growing populations of wild monkeys on the island. (See story here.)

Regarding the public-feedback meeting at Koh Siray on Thursday (May 24) to gauge feedback on what should be done with the wild monkeys there, the senior official who attended the meeting told The Phuket News yesterday (May 25), “Because it was raining very hard, no residents turned up. Actually, the only people present were reporters.

“As we could not use that meeting to gauge the opinion of any of the local residents, we will just use the forms completed and returned by residents so far and we will hold another public-feedback meeting on Koh Siray at a later date.”

The next public hearing about Phuket’s wild monkeys will be held at Chalerm Phrakiet King Kaew Phatthana Hall in Rassada on Sunday (May 27), with the last originally scheduled meeting to be held at Wat Khao Rang (Rang Hill Temple) in Phuket Town on Monday (May 28).



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