Despite compensation, Cha Khan villagers find it hard to make a living

Cha Khan villagers in Nabule area of Yephyu Township, Tenasserim Division who had their homes bulldozed by the Italian-Thai Development Company (ITD) to make way for the Dawei deep-sea project are facing difficulties to make a living.

Local sources said villagers from Cha Khan were force to leave their homes to make way for construction work related to the Dawei deep-sea port project.

Ma Lwin Lwin, from the Tavoyan Women’s Union, a group monitoring the deep-sea port project, told Karen News that half of the Cha Khan villagers were jobless and were now facing difficulties to make a living.

Speaking to Karen News, Ma Lwin Lwin said.

“Villagers here [Cha Khan village] earn their living by working on salt farms and selling it in other areas. Now many local communities, in the Nabule area that depends on salt production will have to buy salt from other area for higher prices.”

The ITD company paid one million Kyat compensation to each village household have been relocated. Ma Lwin Lwin said that the villagers don’t know what they can work on with the compensation money they received.

“Villagers who are fishermen depend on Cha Khan shoreline to catch fish. They earn their living from fishing, especially during the ‘wet season’. Now, even though they got one million kyat from the company, they have left their village and are now jobless.”

Villagers complained that the clearing of trees, the area has become hotter and the once quiet village has now gone and been replaced by the noises of the ITD Company trucks that are transporting construction materials.

The Tavoyan Voice website, claims that Thailand’s largest electronic power company, the PTT Company, will invest USD 4 million in the Dawei deep seaport, a 3,000 megawatt coal-fired power project of the ITD Company.

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