The leader of the Pheu Thai party says there’s currently no contingency plan if Pita Limjaroenrat fails in his bid to become Thailand’s next PM. Cholnan Srikaew says the 8-party Move Forward-led coalition, is still pressing senators to give Pita their vote.
“We’re still in the process of seeking as many votes as possible to reach the 376 vote requirement.”
(376 votes is the 375 majority in a two-house sitting, plus 1)
The Move Forward leader needs 376 votes to become the country’s 30th prime minister and the 8-party coalition currently has 312 MP vote. Therefore, Pita needs an extra 64 votes from 250 senators (or from other lower-house MPs), if parties outside the coalition don’t vote for Pita.
Several senators have already said they will vote against Pita or abstain, due to his party’s pledge to reform the lèse-majesté law, which prohibits criticism of the monarchy.
According to a Nation Thailand report, there has been some speculation that if Pita fails to get enough votes to secure the top job, the Pheu Thai Party (which came second in the May 14 general election) could take over the leadership of the coalition. In this event, the party is expected to nominate Srettha Thavisin for the PM role.
But Cholnan denied there is a contingency plan in place.
Now that the House Speaker and two deputy speakers have been appointed, Cholnan says the election of a prime minister will take place within two weeks. Yesterday, Wan Muhamad Noor Matha, leader of the Prachachart Party, was unanimously elected House Speaker, with Cholnan thanking MPs for their support during the process.
“This was a good sign of cooperation in the House.”
SOURCE: Nation Thailand