The Bangkok Metropolitan Authority (BMA) banned the sales of alcohol on Apr 10. Originally, the ban was supposed to last until April 20, but has since been extended to April 30.
An announcement might be made later today (April 29), if the ban will continue.
He posted on his social media account a home delivery service for alcohol, which is illegal under the ban. The post also shows alcohol bottles with labels on them, which is against Thai laws, even without the ban or emergency decree.
On Apr 20, he received a summon from the Office of the Alcohol Control Committee to come in for questioning by May 20.
Why did you do it?
Is it fair? I don’t think it’s fair. Do we have to do it? Obviously, yes. In these situations, we’ve received no support [from the government] and we still have a team of staff to support.
Do you think the alcohol ban is fair or necessary in order to help slow down the pandemic?
They say it’s to stop people from gathering to drink, but I think it’s unreasonable, because the emergency decree alone can achieve that.
I’m not okay with this regulation. The food & beverage scene in Thailand has been on the rise, even under the country’s restrictions, and it could bring so much money into the country. Then the government just kills it by imposing a rule from an authority that isn’t legitimate. These people just don’t see anything important about this scene.
If the alcohol ban continues, what kind of damage would this do to the industry?
To be honest, the damage has already been done, but if it lasts any longer, it will cripple the bar business, the cocktail and craft beer scene. After April, everyone would already be suffering so much. If longer than this, the government would push some people down the cliff. They could be killing these people mentally… and physically as well.
What is it with the stigma with alcohol in Thailand?
It’s the easiest thing to blame. The easiest thing to understand is that alcohol is a “bad thing,” that it goes against the teaching of Buddhism. The Thai Health Promotion Foundation (ThaiHealth) is funded by alcohol tax, also known as “sin tax” and their job is to promote a healthy way of life and that for people not to drink alcohol. So, if they did a good job, they would have very little funding, right? There wouldn’t even be ThaiHealth, but they keep getting more and more money. It’s a little contradicting.
Shouldn’t we promote responsible drinking instead of banning the whole thing? I don’t understand what the country is trying to be? Are you trying to be a dry-state and ban alcohol completely? We have to stop being so pretentious and know what we are. But we keep being in the middle and it creates a lot of confusion. It makes me ask myself questions like, so is my business illegal? Because right now my business is being blamed for a lot of things. If you say alcohol is bad for our health, then I also say sugar is bad for our health, too.
I’m not saying what I do is the best thing, you should educate people on how to consume things responsibly, everything has a middle way. But alcohol is always the scapegoat.
You posted on your Facebook about going into politics, what’s that about?
I’ve never seen any government that treats the people this badly before. Even when people come out and expose the bad things that they do, they are not even affected by any of it, not even a little bit. I’ve never felt so inconsequential. I feel like my voice doesn’t matter anymore in this country. So I want to be in there to try and make a change and stand up for people who are treated as worthless. They make laws just to attack people, instead of putting things in order and that seems to be the situation right now. We Thais are so patient to have put up with it for this long.
My primary goal is to make sure my staff survive, but my end goal is I want to change the society. I don’t even know how it’s going to end, but I have to do something, otherwise what is the point of life.
Politics is not out of reach. Do you think people would complain about the government if they did a good job looking after us? We’re not trying to get rich during this time of crisis. We’re simply just trying to survive.
I feel like everyone needs to know their rights. You need to fight for your rights, keep asking questions. We shouldn’t ignore injustice. We shouldn’t let oppression happen