Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Outgoing village and district headmen of Ko Samui

Found on National News Bureau of Thailand is the following: Local administrators from Ko Samui meet Interior Minister from May 22nd.
Chiefs of tambons and villages from Surat Thani’s Ko Samui District today paid courtesy call on Interior Minister Chavarat Charnvirakul at the Ministry to seek extension of their tenures.

During the meeting with the tambon and village chiefs from Ko Samui Municipality whose position terms would expire on June 8, the Interior Minister instructed them that they must perform duties to the best of their abilities and produce satisfactory results. He said the local area administrators must work in compliance with government policies to bring advantages to the country.

When Asked how the Municipality Act benefited the tambon and village chiefs if it was enacted, Mr. Chavarat answered he would study the details and consider how to help them, adding the Ministry was entitled to make a decision on it according to the law.
Two things are notable on this - the first is the fact that these headmen are still in office right now, even though the upgrade of Samui to a town municipality was effective June 9 2008. As this is exactly one year before the end of tenure mentioned in the article above this means that these headmen have one year more in office than I would have expected. Apparently this one year is to be a kind of transition period in which the municipality takes over the tasks from the headmen.

The second things is that even though the law says that the headmen loose their function once a municipality is at town (mueang) or city (nakhon) level, they still try to lobby at the Interior Ministry to stay in office. It's like all the lobbying and blocking around the upgrade last year hasn't stopped after the decision was finally made.

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