FFP demise could swell sympathy for opposition

FFP demise could swell sympathy for opposition

The disbandment of Future Forward Party (FFP), ordered by the Constitutional Court on Friday, could actually help the opposition, analysts say. It may lose a number of votes in the upcoming censure debate, but will likely gain more sympathy and even support from the public in its fight to bring down the coalition government.

The opposition now aims to generate a "crisis of confidence" in the government, which could place it under pressure no matter how many votes of confidence it will gains in this week's no-confidence debate, said opposition chief whip Sutin Klungsang of the Pheu Thai Party.

The opposition didn't expect to persuade the government with its arguments but to show why it shouldn't be trusted to continue leading the country, he said.

"We will gain more sympathy from society while the government will simply have more hands to raise to support it [in the no-confidence vote]," he said. "We may be worse off in parliament, but overall we will be in a better position given the psychological impact of the FFP's disbandment on society."

Information prepared by the FFP for the coming debate had been passed on to other opposition MPs who will cover this part of the debate for the FFP, he said.

Pheu Thai director Thanusak Lek-uthai agreed that a number of the remaining FFP MPs are expected to defect to the coalition government, boosting its numbers in parliament.

But on the other hand, internal conflicts in the government could intensify as parties start to demand a better deal for being part of the coalition, he said.

Pheu Thai itself would also have to rethink its political strategies as new movements for change start to emerge both inside and outside parliament, he said.

Deputy Democrat Party leader Nipit Intarasombat, meanwhile, admitted the government did have a problem with its unity as a result of its consisting of several factions.

These cliques are under pressure as they live with the prospect the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) will find their conduct wanting, he said.

He predicted the coalition will manage to stay on until the end of its four-year term and might even mount a comeback after the next election.

Assoc Prof Yuttaporn Issarachai, a political science lecturer with Sukhothai Thammathirat Open University, agreed the opposition would lose its strength in the censure debate, while the government's future would depend largely on how it deals with its internal conflicts.

He expected a cabinet reshuffle some time in the middle of this year, saying those ministers receiving low votes of support in the no-confidence vote would be replaced.


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