Former Palang Pracharath leaders launch new party

Former Palang Pracharath leaders launch new party

Sarng Anacot Thai will not propose Prayut as PM

Uttama Savanayana (sixth left), Sontirat Sontijirawong (seventh left) and other founding members on stage during the official introduction of the Sarng Anacot Thai Party on Wednesday. (Photo: Varuth Hirunyatheb)
Uttama Savanayana (sixth left), Sontirat Sontijirawong (seventh left) and other founding members on stage during the official introduction of the Sarng Anacot Thai Party on Wednesday. (Photo: Varuth Hirunyatheb)

Former key members of the Palang Pracharath Party have unveiled a new party and taken a firm position against Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.

Uttama Savanayana and Sontirat Sontijirawong on Wednesday officially launched Sarng Anacot Thai, meaning building the future of Thailand, which will focus on economic issues and ending prolonged political divisions.

"We will not propose Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha as the party's candidate for prime minister," Mr Sontirat said. "We are not setting up a party to prolong the power of any group."

Former deputy prime minister Somkid Jatusripitak could be one of the party's  candidates for the premiership.

"Personally, I think he is suitable," Mr Uttama said. "Frankly speaking, he has never abandoned us."

The party will decide on three people, one of them the party leader, qualified to serve as prime minister before short-listing to one candidate.

A person qualified to be a candidate for prime minister, who can lead the country out of political conflict, not be part of the conflict, Mr Uttama said.

Sarng Anacot Thai would vote to select the party leader and other key positions at a later meeting, the date yet to be set.

Mr Sontirat said the focus of the party would be on revitalising the economy.

It had long been expected Mr Uttama and Mr Sontirat would form a new party, ever since they resigned from Palang Pracharath in 2020 amid internal conflict within the ruling party. Mr Somkid also stepped down from the government.

Mr Uttama was the Palang Pracharath leader and Mr Sontirat the party secretary-general before leaving the party, which was formed to make Gen Prayut the prime minister in the general election.

Mr Uttama's position in Palang Pracharath was taken over by Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon.

Key politicians joining Sarng Anacot Thai unveiled during the introduction ceremony included former deputy Democrat Party leader Nipit Intarasombat and former Palang Pracharath party-list MP Supon Fongngam.

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