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Prawit tipped as Pita’s rival for PM


By Thai Newsroom Reporters

PALANG PRACHARATH LEADER PRAWIT Wongsuwan will likely be named prime minister in rivalry against Move Forward leader Pita Limjaroenrat, partisan sources said today (June 30).

Prawit, the leader of the fourth largest elected party, will likely compete in a sustained effort to rise to power though he may have only 188 MPs on his side, compared to 312 in support of Pita, the leader of the No.1 largest party, as long as senators could potentially play a decisive role toward either side’s victory, the sources said.

The military-designed constitution requires a partisan candidate for head of government to secure votes of support from more than half the combined total of MPs and senators or at least 376 votes. All 250 senators were handpicked by the Palang Pracharath leader and de facto Ruam Thai Sang Chart boss Prayut Chan-o-cha following the 2014 coup.

Many of the unelected lawmakers who are more or less speculated to abstain from voting when it comes to the naming of Pita might probably cast yea votes for Prawit instead, the partisan sources said.

A joint House/Senate meeting will very likely be held around the middle of July to vote for a prime minister, following the picking of a House speaker and a couple of deputy House speakers scheduled for July 4.

According to the sources who only spoke on condition of anonymity, Prawit will likely bring the Pheu Thai under de facto party boss Thaksin Shinawatra into a brand new coalition which he would almost immediately set up only if he won votes for himself as the country’s 30th prime minister.

In such a probable scenario, all Pheu Thai MPs who would almost certainly cast yea votes for Pita under “ties that bind” among the Move Forward-led coalition partners could potentially turn an otherwise minority government under Prawit’s leadership into a majority one within a couple of weeks, given their eventually being part of it.

The Pheu Thai rank and file would effortlessly find excuses for jumping onto Prawit’s bandwagon which might probably consist of the Bhumjaithai under de facto party boss Newin Chidchob, among others, in addition to the Palang Pracharath, they said.


Top: Palang Pracharth leader Prawit Wongsuwan.

Insert and Front Page: Move Forward leader Pita Limjaroenrat. All photos: Thai Rath

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