By Thai Newsroom Reporters
PRIME MINISTER PRAYUT Chan-o-cha will likely take the first step in design to prolong his power beyond the next general election by becoming head of the Ruam Thai Sang Chart Party’s advisory board and then being named the No.1 candidate of the brand-new party for head of government, a partisan source said today (Nov.25).
But Prayut, who has been allowed by court to remain in power until 2025, is not going to apply for membership of the Ruam Thai Sang Chart anytime soon and will remain tight-lipped when asked by reporters at the moment about his political future, the source said.
The current premier will likely assume the post of chairman of the Ruam Thai Sang Chart advisory board and then be named the No.1 partisan contender for prime minister in the next general election whilst ex-Democrat MP Pirapan Salirathawipak, leader of the pro-Prayut party, will likely be named the No.2 partisan candidate for head of the post-election government, the source said.
A number of MPs representing southern constituencies, either past or present, as well as those of eastern and western constituencies are more or less expected to jump onto the Ruam Thai Sang Chart bandwagon.
Digital Economy & Society Minister Chaiwut Thanakhamanusorn and Labour Minister Suchart Chomklin, both being currently attached to the ruling Palang Pracharath Party, are widely speculated to hop over to the pro-Prayut party.
Chaiwut has already resigned as Palang Pracharath party-listed MP effective today.
It remains to be seen whether Palang Pracharath secretary-general-cum-Deputy Finance Minister Santi Prompat might probably as well follow suit amidst speculation that a dozen “renegade” Thai Economic MPs under leadership of maverick MP Thammanat Prompao will likely come back to the Palang Pracharath, headed by Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan, on condition that the largest coalition partner no longer name Prayut as partisan candidate for prime minister and Santi no longer perform as secretary-general of the party.
Whilst the Ruam Thai Sang Chart reportedly intends to keep Prayut in power beyond the nationwide election, speculated early next year, the Palang Pracharath plans to send Prawit vying for head of government.
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha. Top photo: Matichon, Front Page photo: Thai Rath