By Thai Newsroom Reporters
PHEU THAI CANDIDATE FOR prime minister Settha Taweesin suggested today (July 7) Move Forward leader/prime minister-designate Pita Limjaroenrat be given just one chance of being voted head of government.
Settha, known as personally close to deposed prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra, advised Pita be given just one chance of being voted prime minister during a joint House/Senate session scheduled for July 13 and that the Move Forward leader should not be given a second chance scheduled for July 19.
His comments apparently contrasted with those earlier made by House Speaker Wan Muhamad Noor Matha who insisted that Pita be given a second chance if he eventually fails to get enough support from the MPs and senators in the first round of joint voting.
Given a combined force of 312 MPs on his side, Pita will need at least 64 more votes from non-coalition MPs and senators to make a minimum of 376 votes of support as required by law.
Nonetheless, Move Forward secretary-general Chaithawat Tulathon and deputy Move Forward leader Sirikanya Tansakul have expressed confidence that Pita will make it at the first go.
Most of the unelected senators who have so far remained tightlipped might probably cast their votes in his favour, Chaithawat said.
All 250 senators were handpicked by Palang Pracharath leader Prawit Wongsuwan and coup leader-turned-prime minister Prayut Chan-o-cha four years ago.
Both Prawit and Prayut, the de facto Ruam Thai Sang Chart boss, contested last May’s general election as partisan candidates for prime minister.
Settha has run among a trio of Pheu Thai contestants for prime minister including Paetongtarn Shinawatra, daughter of de facto Pheu Thai boss/deposed prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, and former justice minister Chaikasem Nitisiri.
The Pheu Thai rank and file have stopped short of pinpointing who among the trio would most likely be the first to be named prime minister at all.
Neither Settha nor Paetongtarn ran in the Pheu Thai party-listed mode since both had merely intended to take the helm of government and sought no other positions in government.
Top: Pheu Thai’s candidate for prime minister Settha Taweesin. Photo: Thai Rath
Insert and Front Page: Move Forward leader/prime minister-designate Pita Limjaroenrat with Front Page picture showing the prime minister’s chair next to him. Photos: Matichon