Here is a look at the top NATIONAL stories, chosen by our Pattaya News/TPN National team, from last week, May 3rd to the 9th, with some commentary. They are not in any particular level of importance but are listed in the order of date of publication.
1. Moderna Covid-19 vaccines will be sold directly to the Thai government only, says Public Health Minister
It is confirmed that Moderna vaccine company will sell its first batch of Covid-19 vaccines to the Thai government only, similar to other vaccine manufacturers. However, the Government Pharmaceutical Organisation (GPO) would import the vaccine before selling doses to private companies later. The private companies, including private hospitals, who wish to buy the vaccine must directly request and purchase the quantity of the doses to the GPO. Currently, the vaccine is under the procedure of preparing registration documents to submit to the Thai Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for legal distribution. It is not yet mentioned of how long the procedure would take and when the distribution would be available in Thailand.
2. Prime Minister orders proactive health approach in all crowded communities in Bangkok following rapidly increasing number of infections found in Klong Toey
Prime Minister instructed the Bangkok governor and related agencies in Bangkok to urgently conduct a proactive approach in crowded communities in Bangkok as the number of Covid-19 infections was increasing from the areas, reaching hundreds of infections per day last week. The Prime Minister also ordered several facilities, including mobile health units, hospital beds, field hospitals, and supplies to infected and high-risk people in the communities.
3. Thammanat not disqualified as MP and Deputy Agricultural Minister over Australian drug conviction
Deputy Agricultural Minister Thammanat Prompao was inspected by the Criminal Court regarding the Australian court rule of his drug case in 1994 following a complaint filed by members of oppositional parties, asking the court to rule if the Australian courts’ conviction would disqualify him as a politician. He was sentenced to six years in jail in 1994 in Sydney and being deported from Australia over the conviction of alleged heroin importation. However, the Criminal court did not find to disqualify him for his positions last week, reasoning that his case was conducted by a foreign court, the conviction, therefore, has no effect on his positions in Thailand and he can remain as MP of Palang Pracharath Party and the Deputy Agricultural Minister.
4. Prominent pro-democracy activist, Panusaya, a.k.a. “Rung”, granted bail after being detained since March over lese majeste charges
After being on a hunger strike and put in jail for 59 days under lese majeste charges, Pro-democracy prominent protest leader, Rung, has finally bailed out with a surety of 200,000 baht. She must vow to wear an EM bracelet device at all times and not to participate in any activities, organize or lead any protests, and give any speeches that are reportedly offensive to the royal institution. She has kept a low profile since being released.
And, that is all for this week. Thank you as always for reading the Pattaya News/TPN News!