The following has been edited to reflect the officially official restrictions announced by the CCSA this afternoon.
Thai authorities this afternoon approved stricter measures for Bangkok and nine other provinces that will enact a curfew, effectively close shopping malls, and encourage everyone to stay home.
Effective Monday, people living in Bangkok and its surrounding provinces, as well as several provinces in southern Thailand, must not leave their homes between 9pm and 4am, Apisamai Srirangsan of the Covid-19 task force announced at 4pm Friday.
The task force has also proposed extending the emergency degree, which has been in effect since March 2020, until the end of Sep, pending cabinet approval.
The not-a-lockdown lockdown will see shopping malls closed except for the supermarkets, bank, restaurants, cafes, and pharmacies within them; those are allowed to operate until 8pm.
Outdoors shopping malls, restaurants, and cafes can remain open until 8pm, while convenience stores and night markets must close between 8pm and 4am.
Public parks can remain open, but only until 8pm. Massage parlors and spas remain closed until further notice.
Gatherings of more than five people are not allowed. Public transport will stop running at 9pm, too.
Residents are urged to work from home unless their professions, such as healthcare practitioners, require them to leave the house. Activities that will be allowed include going out to buy food and groceries, seeing a doctor, and getting vaccinated.
The restrictions will affect a total of 10 provinces: Bangkok, Nakhon Pathom, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Samut Prakan, Samut Sakhon, Songkhla, Narathiwat, Pattani, and Yala. Interprovincial travel from these provinces will be restricted.
has been a top trending hashtag on Twitter in Thailand since yesterday, when officials hinted at stricter measures to come.
Meanwhile, multi-millionaire Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha says he will forgo three months of his THB125,590 (US$4,000) salary to alleviate the state burden in the midst of the crisis. Many netizens said Prayuth should have resigned instead.
“Instead of forgoing salary for three months, please resign instead. You [wrecked] the country for seven years but you’re gonna not gonna have salaries for only three months? Bastard,” wrote Twitter user @Kunsong6.
Thailand today marked another new record high of Covid-19 infections and deaths with 9,276 and 72, respectively.
This is breaking news with more details to follow. This story also appears on Coconuts Bangkok.