Srettha Thavisin, one of the three prime ministerial candidates from the Pheu Thai Party, has expressed readiness for the role, if he secures the confidence of his party to step into the key position.
Responding to inquiries amidst speculations about his potential nomination for a fresh prime ministerial vote, Mr Srettha provided some insight.
He commented that this possibility may arise if Pita Limjaroenrat, the leader of the Move Forward Party (MFP), fails to secure a re-nomination as a candidate for the joint parliamentary session tomorrow.
“We at the Pheu Thai Party have discussed this matter for four months, and if I weren’t ready for the job, I would not have been named one of three prime ministerial candidates by the party,” he explained.
Still, he highlighted that a crucial concern at this time was to expedite the assembly of a new coalition government and initiate economic relief strategies.
Mr. Srettha pointed out that the slow economy is genuinely distressing many people, adding that addressing this urgent issue is a primary duty of the Pheu Thai party.
Talks regarding free trade agreements and the looming redirection of foreign investments from Thailand to nearby countries are high-priority matters that demand immediate attention, he expressed.
“I’m always a team player, and we [the Pheu Thai Party] are democratic. Whatever decision is reached by the party board, I will respect it,” he affirmed.
However, Mr. Srettha opted not to address speculations about a potential alliance between Pheu Thai and opposition party factions such as Bhumjaithai and the Palang Pracharath Party to establish a new government.
An insider from the Pheu Thai Party revealed that, if Mr Pita fails to secure a re-nomination for a prime ministerial vote or doesn’t obtain adequate votes in the joint session, Pheu Thai would initially suggest postponing the vote till the following week.
Phue Thai Party would then propose Mr Srettha as the prime minister. In the meantime, Deputy Pheu Thai leader, Phumtham Wechayachai, urged the MFP to focus on forging a new coalition.
He warned them against getting sidetracked by their current effort to amend Section 272 of the constitution, which is intended to terminate the Senate’s voting rights in prime ministerial selections.
Parliamentarians have attempted at least six times to “switch off” the senators’ voting rights but lacked enough backing in parliament to move the amendment forward.
Such an initiative requires the consent of at least one-third of senators, or 84 senators, to proceed with the motion.
“Mr Pita couldn’t even muster 64 votes from senators in last week’s prime minister vote,” Mr Phumtham noted.
He looks to Mr Pita for an explanation of his plans to propel the country forward amidst the ongoing dispute over the prime ministerial vote.
Industries such as tourism are keen to know when the new government will take office, as they are worried that Thailand’s political instability could negatively impact them, Mr Phumtham said.