Flower vendors win 10-day extension

Flower vendors win 10-day extension

The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) has denied setting a May 31 deadline extension for vendors at Pak Khlong Talat flower market to leave the area.

Vallop Suwandee, chief adviser to the Bangkok governor, said on Monday BMA executives had only agreed to extend the relocation deadline by 10 days.

He was responding to rumours that City Hall had extended the deadline from Monday to May 31.

The BMA is still working on trying to find a new site for vendors, deputy city clerk Jakkraphan Phewngam said. Officials are negotiating with the owner of a potential site in Taling Chan district and things should be decided by the end of the week, he said.

The BMA has already earmarked three new locations nearby: a market owned by the Interior Ministry, Talat Songsoem Kasettakon Thai (the Thai farmer promotion market) and the privately-owned Yodpiman market.

Deputy BMA spokesman Bensai Keeyapaj said city officials have tried to treat vendors fairly and avoid the use of law enforcement.

Efforts to remove vendors from the pavements around Pak Khlong Talat started on Dec 3. A series of meetings between authorities and vendors have taken place as part of the process.

Some vendors said they are angry at the city's attempts to ban all vendors, which has forced many to sell their wares from the back of their trucks.

The eviction is part of the BMA's clean-up drive launched in 2014 to reclaim public spaces. City Hall has relocated several markets including Klong Thom, Saphan Lek and Tha Chang.

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