People in Pattani province and neighbouring areas yesterday have set up a network to take action against the construction of a coal-fired power plant in Songkhla’s Thepha district.
They claim the plant will pose a threat to national security as well as people’s health and livelihood in the deep South.
During the launch at a community centre in Pattani’s Nong Chik district, 200 participants were told about the negative impacts, including claims that the plant would deal another blow to the region’s yet-to be-solved unrest. The network, namely Permatamas, has several coordinators, including Tuwaedaniya Tuwaemae-ngae, director of the Patani Raya Bureau for Peace and Development.
Tuwaedaniya said academics would deliver speeches in Pattani, Narathiwat and Yala as well as Songkhla’s four districts about the impact so as to get local participation in its efforts to stall or suspend the project.
Claiming that people’s health and environment may be affected by smoke laced with heavy metal, he said the Thepha project study only took nine months, compared to the Krabi project’s four years, and all details were not revealed to the public.
If this state enterprise project goes ahead without the national security agency making it a national security agenda, it could cause discontent and distrust, which could lead to new conflicts, he said.