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Deputy speaker says Pita may need 3 rounds of voting to be next Thai PM

PHOTO: Facebook/Pita Limjaroenrat - พิธา ลิ้มเจริญรัตน์

Pichet Chuamuangphan from the Pheu Thai Party says he believes Pita Limjaroenrat could be elected PM on July 20, after 3 rounds of voting. Pichet, who was appointed deputy House Speaker earlier this week, predicts 3 rounds of voting will be necessary for the Move Forward leader to get the 376 votes required to become PM (that’s a majority of the joint sitting of the Thai parliament – MPs and Senators).

Nation Thailand reports that Pichet, who is the Pheu Thai MP for Chiang Rai, has confirmed the first round of voting will be held on July 13. Should Pita not receive enough votes, there will be a second round held on July 19, followed by a third round on July 20, if necessary.

In order for Pita to be elected PM, he will need at least 376 votes from a combination of 500 House members and 250 senators.

Pichet points out that there’s no limit on how many times someone can be nominated for the PM job, according to Thailand’s constitution. He says the 8-party coalition will be united behind Pita when voting takes place. This is in line with the MoU signed after the May 14 general election, which saw Move Forward and Pheu Thai come first and second respectively.

The Pheu Thai MP adds that, while some senators may have stated that they won’t back Pita for PM, he believes the majority want to see an effective transition of power and the smooth formation of a new government.

A number of senators have publicly stated they will either vote against Pita or abstain, due to the Move Forward Party’s pledge to reform Thailand’s lèse-majesté law. The controversial law prohibits criticism of the monarchy and some senators consider any efforts to amend it as a threat to the institution.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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