10 small parties back Palang Pracharath

10 small parties back Palang Pracharath

Palang Pracharath dealmaker Somsak Thepsuthin says his Palang Pracharath Party has gathered more than 250 seats. (Photo by Pawat Laopaisarntaksin)
Palang Pracharath dealmaker Somsak Thepsuthin says his Palang Pracharath Party has gathered more than 250 seats. (Photo by Pawat Laopaisarntaksin)

Ten of the 11 parties awarded one party-list seat each have pledged to side with Palang Pracharath and support Prayut Chan-o-cha as prime minister while the other one says it will join any coalition that can form the government.

The 11 parties with less than 71,000 votes each, the average required for an MP, were given one seat each on Wednesday under the Election Commission's calculation method.  

Pichet Sathirachawal, leader of Thai People Justice, one of the 11 parties, on Thursday confirmed the direction on behalf of 10 parties.

The remaining one — New Democracy — could join them soon as its leader Surathin Picharn said his party would go along with any bloc that could form the government.

Small parties have formed a loose alliance for leverage with no official leadership.

Some of the 149 party-list MPs endorsed by the EC reported themselves on Thursday. Apart from the 11 small parties, Aree Krainara, a party-list MP of Pheu Chat, an off-shoot of Pheu Thai, showed up. He confirmed the party's stand to remain with the Pheu Thai-led coalition.

However, Palang Pracharath dealmaker Somsak Thepsuthin is confident of forming a multi-party government, claiming his party has gathered more than half of 500 MPs.

Mr Somsak said he saw no problem for Palang Pracharath in allocating seats to the small parties.

Pheu Thai secretary-general Phumtham Wechayachai dismissed Mr Somsak's claim of securing more than 250 seats, saying the political situation was still uncertain.

He pointed out mid-sized parties, including the Democrat and Bhumjaithai, had yet to announce their decisions.

Mr Phumthai again slammed the formula the EC used in calculating the party-list MPs, saying it gave many small parties a free ride even though they had fewer votes than the average per MP.

Pheu Thai won the election on March 24 with 136 seats while Palang Pracharath came second with 97. Palang Pracharath also received 18 more from its party list.

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