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Party leader bowing to party financier’s daughter no surprise: Academic


By Thai Newsroom Reporters

IT WAS NO SURPRISE FOR ANYONE to see Pheu Thai Party leader Chonlanan Srikaew take a bow toward Paetongtarn Shinawatra, the youngest daughter of de facto party financier/former premier Thaksin Shinawatra, according to an academic.

Anon Sakworawich of the National Institute of Development Administration has posted on his Facebook page to make a sarcastic remark on last Sunday’s event in which the top leader of the largest opposition party bowed to Paetongtarn, nicknamed Oong-ing, as she was about to deliver a keynote speech during a partisan seminar in Udon Thani.

The NIDA academic said the event was not a surprise phenomenon, given the fact that the young woman is a daughter of the de facto financier and founder of the party.

Anon apparently made his comments as a follow-up on criticism launched online over Chonlanan’s evidently submissive act toward Thaksin’s daughter.

During the seminar entitled “Pheu Thai Family: The Big House, the Same Heart”, Paetongtarn was unanimously named “head of the Pheu Thai Family ”, the position largely viewed to be practically bigger than that of Chonlanan. 

However, Paetongtarn stopped short of confirming that she will eventually become the Pheu Thai candidate for head of a post-election government, saying she will only tell after the House of Representatives has been dissolved and a general election called.

Given the post of “head of the Pheu Thai Family” which may be tantamount to “de facto leader” of Pheu Thai Party, it was no surprise for anyone to see such a nominal party leader taking a bow to the real one, Anon said.

“Chonlanan might not have taken a bow to Oong-ing but to the financial power of her father. Or maybe he was merely bowing to the de facto party leader and his heiress,” Anon commented online.

Former election commissioner Somchai Srisutthiyakorn earlier remarked that “the head of the Pheu Thai Family” might be practically more important than the top leader of the opposition party and cautioned that future performances of “the head of the Pheu Thai Family” might possibly violate the Political Party Act.

Over a course of 20-plus years of Thailand’s deeply-complicated politics, Thaksin founded Thai Rak Thai Party which was legally dissolved and gave birth to People’s Power Party which was also dissolved and became Pheu Thai Party. 

Apart from himself, Thaksin already had managed to have a few of his close relatives perform as head of an elected government only to be finally ousted by a coup as he was in 2006 or by undemocratic means.

That refers to Thaksin’s brother-in-law Somchai Wongsawat who was named premier without literally stepping into Government House to run the country and was automatically deprived of premiership as an aftermath of the dissolution of People’s Power Party to which he belonged and Thaksin’s younger sister/ex-premier Yingluck Shinawatra who was deposed in 2014’s coup by then-army chief/now-premier Prayut Chan-o-cha.


Top: Head of Pheu Thai Family Paetongtarn Shinawatra. Photo: Top News

Home Page: Pheu Thai Party seminar in Udon Thani last weekend. Photo: Thansettakij

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