As first posted on our social media channels this afternoon, Chanthaburi has banned all sales of alcohol.
The Chanthaburi governor stated that this will, according to him, help stop Covid-19 by limiting parties and gatherings around alcohol. Chanthaburi is an eastern province in Thailand, located roughly south and east of Chonburi.
The Chanthaburi Governor Mr. Sutee Thongyam released an order yesterday (October 6th) that has banned all sales of alcohol anywhere in the province including in malls, local groceries, convenience stores, and restaurants. Bars have been closed nationwide, technically, since April. This order, however, stops all sales of alcohol period.
The order states that Chanthaburi has continued to report new cases of Covid-19, with 450 new cases today, October 7th, alone, and has shown no signs of decreasing.
Many confirmed cases of Covid-19, according to the Governor, were found in clusters which were at parties, local traditions, buffets, and ceremonies with alcohol involved.
According to the Governor, alcohol drinking, specifically people using it as a social opportunity to gather together and have a party, is bringing clusters of infection and is dificult to control. This has effected the province public health and community economy as long as the number of confirmed cases is not decreasing. The Governor added that many people have let their guard down and are holding private parties and events since entertainment venues have been closed for half a year.
The order takes effect from October 7th to October 31st, 2021. Penalties are stiff with the potential for huge fines and possible jail time under the communicable disease act and emergency decree to control Covid-19.
TPN media notes that the reaction online to the order was nearly 100% universally negative. Many “netizens” questioned why markets, factories, and similar places could have hundreds or even thousands of people mingling and interacting but that enforcement continually focused on alcohol.
The order is in Thai below.