No “Tea Money” in Isan
Bad times for Thailand’s economy. The Thai Police in Isan are in debt. The farmers are in debt and they can’t pay any “Tea money” to the Police in Isan or even pay their own debt. The farmers are loosing their land to the loan sharks. 1.6 million farmers are reported to owe almost 400 billion baht. Average debt: 237,158 baht/farmer.
2,500 police officers in the upper Northeast are defaulting on debts and about 600 are facing bankruptcy lawsuits. Officers who are bankrupt are not allowed to remain on the force.
- Police officers earn an average of 14,760 baht per month but junior positions pay much less, between 6,800 and 8,340 baht. The officers have to buy their own guns and office supplies.
- 13,000 officers of Region 4 owe the Government Savings Bank (GSB) about 9 billion baht. 2,500 officers have defaulted and their combined debt was about 2 billion baht, 600 officers are being sued for bankruptcy .
- Region 4 officials are asking the GSB to discuss debt restructuring. The process has already helped 1,100 officers whose debts total about 900 million baht. Negotiations are under way for 1,200 officers with combined debts of about 1 billion baht.
- For the 600 officers whose cases have already reached court, they would have to find enough money to repay their debts right away if they wanted to keep their jobs, Pol Lt Gen Boonlert said.
- We are talking about 833,000 baht / officer.
- The solution to that problem as I see it:
- Permanent solution: Increase their salaries to stop Police corruption but Prayuth said “No, let the next government deal with that issue”.
- Fast solution: Move these officers to Bangkok, Pattaya or Phuket so they can get their share of the real “Tea money”. But no, these positions are reserved for the well connected and whoever paid enough “Baht” to the corrupted Police in Charge.
- Thai Police solution: They increase their illegal activities to pay their debts. Thai police are so creative from murders to Yaba to human trafficking. They are simply “Criminals in uniform“.