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Prayut orders urgent relief funds for flood victims

Prayut orders urgent relief funds for flood victims

BANGKOK: Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has ordered a relief fund to be handed out to flood victims quickly without first waiting for the water to recede, said government spokesman Anucha Burapachaisri.

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By Bangkok Post

Thursday 27 October 2022, 07:16AM


A child wades through floodwater in Ban Hua San village of Muang district, Khon Kaen, yesterday (Oct 26). Photo: Chakrapan Natanri

A child wades through floodwater in Ban Hua San village of Muang district, Khon Kaen, yesterday (Oct 26). Photo: Chakrapan Natanri

Gen Prayut has issued instructions for related ministries to hasten the relief fund disbursement using a payment guideline from 2011 when similar compensation of B5,000 baht per flood-affected household was approved, reports the Bangkok Post.

“The prime minister has made it clear the funds should be given out quickly without having to wait for the floods to recede first,” the spokesman said.

Prayut said the issue should be concluded next week so people can rest assured that the government is taking active steps to help them financially in times of need.

Mr Anucha added the premier was anxious about the people, including those bed-ridden, who are stranded in their flooded homes. He insisted communication technology and the necessary equipment should be deployed to provide remote medical consultation to the sick or evacuate them if necessary.

During his tour last week of Sing Buri, one of the Central Plains provinces hardest hit by floods, Prayut received word about a bed-ridden resident in distress. He immediately ordered the governor to dispatch a boat to take the patient to a hospital.

At Tuesday’s (Oct 25) weekly Cabinet meeting, Prayut was briefed on the flood situation nationwide. He said equipment and machinery should be mobilised to drain floodwater, particularly in areas hit by protracted inundation.

Various state agencies have released funds to aid households impacted by the floods. Local administrative organisations have approved 181 million baht to cater to the emergency needs of residents.

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The Budget Bureau has set aside B2 billion as a flood disaster fund while the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation has contributed part of its own budget for relief efforts.

At the same time, the Finance Ministry has issued measures, including extending the tax filing period for business operators and waiving rent for businesses leasing state properties.

Mr Anucha said the Prime Minister’s Office has injected a budget into state funds to be spent helping the organisation of funerals, paying for the welfare of affected families, and buying building materials to fix flood-wrecked homes.

A separate tranche of state funds worth B65 million has also gone toward producing 92,300 relief bags which will be handed out to people in the 13 provinces most heavily flooded.

For the overall picture, about 528,000 households in 59 provinces have been affected by floods.

Emerging from Tuesday’s Cabinet meeting, Prayut said he was keen to get the flood assistance funds to the public, adding the quicker this happens, the better.

The government prepared water-catchment areas, however, these were quickly filled up by floodwater due to a large volume of rainfall that was three times what authorities had estimated.

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