PHUKET: Phuket Governor Maitri Inthusut yesterday conducted an inspection tour of police stations at three key tourism beach areas – Patong, Kamala and Karon – as part of his campaign to promote Phuket as a safe holiday destination.
Joining the governor on his tour was Kathu District Chief Veera Kerdsirimongkol.
Patong Police Superintendent Chiraphat Pochanaphan, who formally heads Kathu Police Station, reported that his 256 officers regularly patrolled the precinct of 16.4 square kilometers, where at least 19,444 people are registered as residents.
Over the past year, Patong Police were called to resolve cases in which foreigners of a total of 64 nationalities were either victims or suspects.
“The cases could be classified as: 68 per cent robberies or theft, 26 per cent physical and sexual assault; and six per cent other severe cases resulting in death,” he said.
Col Chiraphat also explained to Governor Maitri that his efforts to boost tourists’ safety included the setting up of a safety zone throughout the beach resort town, as well as increasing the number of police on patrol in cars, on motorcycles and on foot.
Governor Maitri called on all members of the community to support police efforts to make Phuket a safer tourist destination.
“Ensuring public safety is not only the responsibility of the police, but also of local people, who are an important force in keeping an eye on suspicious or bad behavior in their community,” Governor Maitri said.
Governor Maitri also praised the officers for doing a good job in conducting raids on adult shows; foreigners illegal working and overstaying their visas; and street touts using protected animals.
“We have to keep Phuket a safe place for recreation and leisure, and maintain a positive image so that tourists will still want to visit us,” Governor Maitri explained.