By Thai Newsroom Reporters
THE RULING PALANG PRACHARATH might probably name party boss Prawit Wongsuwan as the sole partisan contestant for prime minister in the next general election, thus keeping Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha at bay.
Deputy Palang Pracharath leader Paiboon Nititawan said today (Dec.19) the executive board of the largest coalition partner might finally name the Palang Pracharath top leader as the only partisan candidate for head of a post-election government rather than a couple or a trio of partisan contenders as earlier speculated.
Prayut who earlier admitted that he had intended to run the country for two more years after the next general election has remained non-committal as to whether he might possibly vie for head of a post-election government under the banners of Prawit’s camp.
Meanwhile, Paiboon made his comments in reference to former commerce minister/former New Economics MP Mingkwan Saengsuwan who recently joined the rank and file of the Palang Pracharath many of whom, he said, have not agreed to pitting the new partisan member either as the sole contender or one of a couple or a trio of contestants running for prime minister under the tickets of Prawit’s camp.
Mingkwan had unilaterally claimed that the Palang Pracharath boss would finally manage to name him one of a couple or a trio of partisan candidates for prime minister in the nationwide election, expected early next year.
The deputy Palang Pracharath leader suggested that Mingkwan be able to tell himself what might be possible and what else might not about his personal ambitions in relation to the ruling party.
Mingkwan who had earlier announced his resignation as MP in the middle of the House chamber in protest of Prayut’s alleged failures to address the nationwide pandemic and the people’s economic woes commented that he would not have joined the Palang Pracharath in the first place if Prayut was still around in Prawit’s camp.
Prawit, largely viewed as kingmaker who had earlier managed to name Prayut an unelected head of the Palang Pracharath-led coalition government after the 2019 general election, has been reportedly inspired to take the helm of government himself in the next race to parliament, partisan sources said.
The Palang Pracharath boss has earlier run the country as caretaker prime minister for several weeks during which Prayut had been suspended by court from doing his prime-ministerial chores pending a ruling on his eight-year tenure which has been finally extended until 2025.
Former police chief Chakthip Chaijinda had been earlier speculated to be named one of a couple or a trio of Palang Pracharath contestants for prime minister.
In the meantime, the event in which Prayut was named the sole Palang Pracharath candidate for prime minister in the previous election was largely viewed as a contentious advantage which he had considerably enjoyed without enrolling himself for partisan membership, according to the partisan sources.
However, the coup leader-turned-premier would no longer be given such privileges from Prawit’s camp in the next general election, they said.
In another development, Bhumjaithai Party leader Anutin Charnvirakul today confirmed that the largest second coalition partner will definitely name him and nobody else as the sole partisan contestant for prime minister.
Anutin’s remark apparently followed speculation that somebody else besides himself might possibly be named among a couple or a trio of contenders under the banners of the Bhumjaithai, steered by de facto party boss Newin Chidchob, for the top post of government.
Newin has earlier pledged to manage to land Anutin the post-election premiership and turn the Bhumjaithai into core of a coalition government, however.
Deputy Prime Minister-cum-Palang Pracharath Party boss Prawit Wongsuwan. Top photo: Thai Rath, Front Page photo: INN News
First insert: Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha. Photo: INN News
Second insert: Public Health Minister-cum-Bhumjaithai Party leader Anutin Charnvirakul. Photo: Thai Rath