Mingkwan: No renegades in New Economics Party

Mingkwan: No renegades in New Economics Party

Mingkwan Sangsuwan assures the media there are no renegades in the New Economics Party and they all remain loyal members of the opposition bloc - despite reports to the contrary. (Photo by Apichart Jinakul)
Mingkwan Sangsuwan assures the media there are no renegades in the New Economics Party and they all remain loyal members of the opposition bloc - despite reports to the contrary. (Photo by Apichart Jinakul)

Leaders of the six-MP New Economics Party (NEP) on Wednesday denied that four of them planned to support the government camp even though they sit on the opposition benches.

Former party leader Mingkwan Sangsuwan led a parade of the party's five other MPs, including acting leader Supadit Arkasarerk, at a news conference at parliament to confirm they were all staying in the opposition bloc.

Mr Mingkwan said the NEP remained united, with no rebellious members supporting the Palang Pracharath Party-led administration. However, the NEP was not committed to supporting all motions tabled by the opposition in parliament. It would not blindly back all opposition moves.

Still, Mr Mingkwan confirmed the party's support for an opposition decision to grill the government in a no-confidence debate.

The news conference was called to end speculation that four NEP members would break ranks to support the government, although they were still with the party. They were, reportedly, the acting party leader and three other MPs - Passakorn Ngerncharoenkul, Manoon Siwapiromrat and Marasi Kajornruengroj.

Mr Supadit said the defection speculation was groundless, but Mr Passakorn admitted he was not completely comfortable with the opposition as it paid too much attention to political issues and ignored economic problems.

Mr Mingkwan resigned as the NEP leader in May but he retains influence and is still seen as the face of the party. 

The government works with only a slim majority in the 500-seat lower house. It has 254 seats after Mongkolkit Suksintaranont, leader of the Thai Civilized Party, pulled his support. The Thai Forest Conservation Party, with two party-list MPs, has also threatened to end its alliance with the government if their policy environmental issues remain on the back burner.


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