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  • NEWS

    Govt 'holds vulnerable underwater to keep big business afloat'

    Spectrum, Supara Janchitfah, Published on 18/03/2012

    » Those whose homes and farms were ravaged by last year's floods are fuming over government compensation plans that they say unfairly favour big business at their expense. About 2.23 billion baht will go to build a 77km floodwall around Rojana Industrial Park and 728 million baht and 700 million baht, respectively, has been earmarked to build floodwalls around Bang Pa-in and Nava Nakorn industrial estates. Many of society's most vulnerable who lost nearly everything in the floods _ including labourers, small farmers, slum dwellers and home-based workers _ are entitled to a mere 5,000 baht in compensation.

  • NEWS

    Is it 'Alien' or 'Avatar' in Kaeng Krachan?

    Spectrum, Supara Janchitfah, Published on 19/02/2012

    » Last July the mysterious crashes of three military helicopters in the space of a couple of weeks riveted the country's focus on Kaeng Krachan National Park, the nation's largest in Phetchaburi province. Much less attention was given to another dramatic series of events around the same time affecting ethnic Karen-Thai inside the park. These culminated in raids by park officials in which a total of 90 of their homes and rice barns were burned down. The ethnic Karen and their advocates say the National Parks, Wildlife and Plants Conservation Department is conducting a campaign to drive them out of the park.

  • NEWS

    Uphill fight means 'people's bills' remain a pipedream

    Spectrum, Supara Janchitfah, Published on 04/03/2012

    » In 2005, Prue Odochao and 90 other forest dwellers made the long march from Chiang Mai to Bangkok's parliament building to voice their opposition to a bill that they had first submitted in 1999. They said the amendments to their community forest draft bill by MPs and senators violated the spirit of the draft, which was intended to formalise community management of forests, a way of life in forested areas for centuries.

  • NEWS

    Farmers in the dark over crop insurance

    Spectrum, Supara Janchitfah, Published on 29/01/2012

    » Rice farmer Nalad Kaewsikhao is luckier than many others whose crops were destroyed by last year's devastating floods. She purchased a crop insurance policy for the yield from her 38.5 rai plot of land from the Bank of Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives (BAAC) in Kalasin's Yang Talat district. The crop insurance programme is open to farmers nationwide, but so far covers only seasonal rice crops (see sidebar).

  • LEARNING

    Teaching in the mother tongue

    Spectrum, Supara Janchitfah, Published on 03/10/2010

    » Waeyousoh Sama-ali started his career in education in 1964 in a remote village of Pattani, assigned to teach at the kindergarten level. The education system at that time was heavily influenced by the nationalistic policies put in place by Field Marshal Plaek Phibulsonggram in 1941, as well as the 1961 Education Act passed during the regime of Field Marshal Sarit Thanarat.

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