PRIME MINISTER Prayut Chan-o-cha today (Apr. 13) ordered Phuket Governor Narong Woosiew to go to Soi Bangla at Patong beach and stop tourists from splashing water and engaging in water gun battles, TV Channel 8 said.
Mr. Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana, a spokesman for the Prime Minister’s Office, said Gen. Prayut told the Phuket governor to explain to tourists that water splashing is not allowed this Songkran to prevent an increase in the number of Covid cases.
He also ordered governors of all other provinces to likewise stop any splashing of water and water fights in their area of jurisdiction.
Prayut asked for the cooperation of the people in following the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration’s (CCSA) resolution to engage in useful activities during this Songkran including sprinkling water on Buddha images and pouring water on the hands of revered elders.
“Songkran Day is the Thai New Year’s Day. It reflects important Thai values such as gratitude, warmth, fun and mutual respect including unity within the family and among friends, the community, and society with ‘water’ being an important medium for bonding.
“The Prime Minister understands the feelings of all brothers and sisters. But with the Covid-19 situation everyone is urged to be patient and pour water on the hands of elders in conveying their good wishes instead of splashing water,” he said.
Meanwhile CCSA said this morning that there were 23,015 Covid cases and 106 deaths over the past 24 hours with this being the fourth day the daily death toll has climbed above a hundred, TV Channel 7 said.
This tally does not include 15,059 people who tested positive by ATK and are awaiting confirmation of infection.
The cumulative confirmed total since the start of the pandemic has now risen over 3.9 million.
Bangkok continued to log the highest number of daily cases totalling 2,932 people, followed by adjacent Nonthaburi province.
Another 27,626 patients were cured taking total recoveries above 3.6 million from the start of the pandemic with over 230,000 still undergoing treatment of whom 1,971 are critically ill and 834 require oxygen.
Regarding the 106 fatalities, 98 had not received a booster jab with the majority being elderly or suffering from chronic illnesses. Fourteen were found to be infected the day they died.
Tourists splashing water and engaging in water fights in Soi Bangla. The Thai headline says, “Phuket told to get strict. Control area where there is water splashing and spraying water guns.” Photo: TV Channel 8