Schools mourn Nong Bua Lam Phu massacre victims

Schools mourn Nong Bua Lam Phu massacre victims

Teachers and about 1,800 students observe one-minute's silence at Tessaban 2 School in Muang district of Buri Ram on Friday morning, mourning the victims of the Nong Bua Lam Phu massacre. (Photo: Surachai Piragsa)
Teachers and about 1,800 students observe one-minute's silence at Tessaban 2 School in Muang district of Buri Ram on Friday morning, mourning the victims of the Nong Bua Lam Phu massacre. (Photo: Surachai Piragsa)

Students, teachers and government officials in provinces nationwide on Friday mourned the victims of Thursday's massacre at a childcare centre in Nong Bua Lam Phu province in the far Northeast.

Many demanded the government seriously tackle the problem of methamphetamine abuse believed to be a major factor in the murder's rampage.

In Buri Ram province, about 1,800 students and their black-clad teachers at Tessaban 2 School in Muang district observed a minute's silence during morning assembly on Friday. The school's national flag was flown at half-mast, as were the flags at all schools and government organisations in the northeastern province.

School director Pakorn Hemthanont said everyone was shocked by the events, especially the slaying of young and innocent children. His school joined everyone in mourning for the victims and sent its moral support to their families.

He also said the school had tightened up its security measures. Parents were not allowed to enter the school.

Teachers were also giving students serious warnings about the dangers and negative effects of drug use, Mr Pakorn said.

Similar mourning activities were held at schools and government offices as far apart as Songkhla, Khon Kaen, Phitsanulok and Nakhon Ratchasima provinces on Friday morning.

In Nakhon Ratchasima, staff at the provincial office of non-formal and informal education in Muang district were in mourning.

Saowanee Pattananaweekul, an academic at the office, said she was shocked by the killings, particularly so because she had a child of the same age as the young victims.

She hoped the proper agencies could comeup with measures to prevent such senseless violence,  and especially incidents involving firearms and drugs.

On Thursday national police chief Pol Gen Damrongsak Kittiprapas said that the former policeman who committed the massacre in Nong Bua Lam Phu had been caught using drugs and was sacked from the force early this year. 

Media reports quoted local residents describing him as a known methamphetamine addict. 

People also reponded to calls for blood donations to help critically injured massacre survivors being treated in hospital. 

Sirikorn Phaengthong, deputy director of Suranaree Technical College, said she invited students and teachers to donate blood at the local Red Cross branch in Muang district of Nakhon Ratchasima on Friday.

Survivors still needed blood and people from her college were willing to help, in addition to sending their moral support,  Ms Sirikorn said.


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