The following is our weekly feature article in which we take a look at the week ahead in Thailand and Pattaya news and the top stories to keep an eye on as we move into the next week.
These are chosen by our editorial team and are developing stories that we will follow and encourage our readers to follow over the next week or so. They are not in any particular order of importance.
These developing stories are for the week of February 14th to February 20th, 2021
1. Protests resume in Thailand after four major pro-democracy leaders denied bail in Lese Majeste case
After a period of “pause” due to both Covid-19 and the December holidays, protesters have announced that protests are resuming, despite the Emergency Decree still being in place and Bangkok being a “red zone” where gatherings and rallies are prohibited. A large rally is planned for this afternoon, Saturday, February 13th, 2021, at Victory Monument, despite authorities warning that the protest could, in their opinion, spread Covid-19 and was against the law. This sets the stage for potential tense situations like a few days prior, seen below:
2. Censure debate scheduled for next week
A no-confidence debate between government opposition parties and the ruling Palang Pracharath is scheduled to start on February 16th, which set against the backdrop of pro-democracy protests is likely to see intense arguments and debates between two radically different points of view. We have not extensively covered this at The Pattaya News, however, the following is a good article from the National News Bureau of Thailand that summarizes the situation:
3. CCSA to consider easing more restrictions, changing zone measurements, including possibly Chonburi
The CCSA (Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration) announced yesterday, Friday, February 12th, 2021, that they are going to meet “sometime” next week to discuss possible zone and restriction changes once again. The last time changes went into effect was about two weeks ago, on February 1st. The discussions will likely include lowering the Eastern provinces, who have been mostly Covid-19 free, from orange to yellow, which would mean restrictions like an 11:00 P.M. closing time for entertainment venues that have seen many complaints would be changed to Midnight.
4. Pavement and sidewalks on South Pattaya road/Second Road Intersection area supposed to be repaired
After complaints from local residents reportedly coming from an out-of-town tourist tripping, falling, and becoming injured, Pattaya City Hall stated that they are planning to repair sidewalks in the area of South Pattaya Road that had become damaged during recent construction work. We will see if the planned work takes place.
5. Valentine’s Day kicks off the next week, restaurant and business owners hope people come out to support local business
After weeks of domestic travel restrictions due to Covid-19 in Chonburi, the province now allows people to enter and leave without needing written permission from officials. Additionally, with entertainment venues opened and many people from Bangkok predicted to be visiting Pattaya due to Bangkok still being a “red” zone for Covid-19 (which means bars and entertainment venues are closed) hopes are that Valentines will at least give a small boost for local business.