Bangkok Governor Race
Eight candidates, eight visions for city
Pollution, help for disabled, solutions for Rattanakosin Island on agendaSilpakorn University and Nation Channel allowed eight major candidates for Bangkok governor to air their visions on how to develop Rattanakosin Island, clean up polluted waterways and tackle social problems in the area, and improve the quality of life for the disabled.
Pheu Thai candidate Pongsapat Pongcharoen said he would launch two routes of trams for tourists to visit historical sites around Rattanakosin Island to reduce traffic congestion. He would also build sidewalks on the banks of the Chao Phraya from Rama VIII Bridge to Sathorn Bridge.
He said he would set up an office in charge of caring for the disabled and the underprivileged, to provide education and career training and care for them until their last days.
"When MR Sukhumbhand Paribatra was the governor, he provided facilities for the disabled, such as building elevators at BTS stations, but the facilities are still inadequate, so I'll improve them," Pongsapat said.
He said he would cooperate with the national government to buy special new buses for the disabled.
PORTUGUESE 'KUDICHIN' CULTURE
Democrat candidate MR Sukhumbhand Paribatra said he had launched a project to revive the Kudichin (Portugal-Thai descendants) community. If he is re-elected, he will launch a major Kudichin community project to try to bring back the old cultures.
In addition, he said he would ensure Bangkok residents had access to basic facilities to make their lives happier.
RE-CREATING 'VENICE OF THE EAST'
Kosit Suvinijjit, an independent candidate, said he would create cultural spots around Rattanakosin Island and turn it into a night tourist centre.
He would promote a night plaza on Khaosan Road and create a luukthung (Thai country music) town as a strategy involving each of the 50 districts. He would develop the canals to revive the old image of Bangkok as Venice of the East.
Kosit said he would restructure the city administration to set up a special centre to educate parents with disabled children, ensuring that 1 per cent of Bangkok districts' workforce would be people with disabilities.
He would build a small wastewater-treatment facility for each community.
WORK WITH THE ISLAND COMMITTEE
Independent candidate Sereepisuth Temeeyaves said the Bangkok governor could not initiate his or her own development plans for Rattanakosin Island but would have to implement proposals from the Rattanakosin Island Committee. He said he would implement a committee development plan immediately if elected.
Sereepisuth said he would enforce the laws seriously to tackle the problem of polluted water. Encroachers on public waterways would be persuaded to leave.
Samit Samitthinan, an independent candidate, said he would build underground wells to trap flood waters and clean sewers to use them to drain flooding. He would create a system of no red lights at intersections to solve traffic congestion.
DISABLED SUPPORT, CLEAN WATER
Professor Dr Jongjit Hiranlarp, another independent candidate, said society must share with the disabled, and she would build wheelchair ways in schools and universities. She would use a wastewater-treatment system and fine those who released polluted water into canals.
She said she would restrict the growth of Bangkok and build more parks or green areas.
Toranee Ritthamrong, another independent candidate, said that if elected she would invite all failed candidates to be members of her working committee because all have good ideas.
She said she would provide motorised wheelchairs for the disabled so they could travel on their own.
RESTORING THE GIANT SWING
Waranchai Chokchana, another independent candidate, said he would conserve the traditional culture of the areas around Rattanakosin Island and would not allow historical buildings to be demolished.
He would organise the ancient Brahmin ceremony at the Giant Swing once a year.