Thai PM to inspect canals, govt to outline flood-prevention efforts

Thailand's Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra (centre) visit new flood gates at Navanakorn industrial estate to the north of Bangkok.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra will inspect the Royal Thai Army's canal-dredging activities in Bangkok on Wednesday through Friday, Pheu Thai Party deputy spokesman Jirayu Huangsap said yesterday, adding that this week will also see Science Minister Plodprasob Surassawadi announce the progress of the government's flood-prevention preparations.

Meanwhile, flooding in Tak's Mae Sot district, which has prompted Governor Suriya Prasartbundit to declare a disaster zone and allocate Bt3 million (S$118,674) to assist disaster victims, yesterday left residents without tap water. Suriya said flood levels had started to subside and the level of the Moei River had fallen by 30-40cm, adding that 20 factories forced to close because employees could not safely travel to work would re-open tomorrow. He said officials were fixing the tap-water pumps and digging channels to allow flood water to drain into the Moei River more quickly.

Flooding also hit Myanmar's Myawaddy province, where 1,800 people were reportedly forced to set up dwellings along the Asia Highway.

In related news, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration yesterday announced that 90,000 Bangkokians had initially applied for flood-assistance funds, and another 50,000 who were disqualified or simply hadn't received money earlier, had re-submitted their requests. The city aims to pay them all by August 31.

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