Chadchart warns supporters against taking his poll lead for granted

Chadchart warns supporters against taking his poll lead for granted

Bangkok governor candidate Chadchart Sittipunt runs ahead of other candidates in the pack but, there is no guarantee of his victory until the result of the election this Sunday comes. (Photo: Wichan Charoenkiatpakul)
Bangkok governor candidate Chadchart Sittipunt runs ahead of other candidates in the pack but, there is no guarantee of his victory until the result of the election this Sunday comes. (Photo: Wichan Charoenkiatpakul)

Chadchart Sittipunt, an independent candidate in the upcoming Bangkok governor election, is beseeching his supporters to not take comfort in his poll leads.

Mr Chadchart has pinned a message to his Facebook account urging his backers to not take poll results for granted and to head to polling stations on the May 22 election day.

"History has shown that poll results on the Bangkok election can get turned around," he wrote.

A photo with a message that reads "Never Underestimate" was posted on his Facebook page.

Mr Chadchart is currently far ahead of his fellow runners in both the Suan Dusit and Nida polls, which show more than 40% of respondents intending to vote for him. His closest rivals, former Bangkok governor Pol Gen Aswin Kwanmuang and Democrat representative Suchatvee Suwansawat, both received less than 20% endorsement in the surveys.

Pornpan Buathong, a researcher who took part in conducting the Suan Dusit survey, expressed her view to the Bangkok Post on Thursday that only so-called "external factors" such as vote-buying allegations would change the election result from declaring Mr Chadchart the winner.

Mr Chadchart was a transport minister under the government of then-prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra. He has been targeted by some critics for being too close to Ms Yingluck’s elder brother, Thaksin, and the opposition Pheu Thai Party.

Such criticisms are attributed to a political maneuver that successfully blocked former Pheu Thai contender Pongsapat Pongcharoen from winning the capital election in 2013.

Pol Gen Pongsapat was a huge favourite in all polls in the 2013 race, but he ultimately lost to Democrat Party candidate MR Sukhumbhand Paribatra.

Mr Chadchart's campaign message posted on Bangkok streets asserts that he is "the governor for everybody", a likely effort to allay doubt among voters over his connection with Pheu Thai.

He has stressed in multiple addresses that he is running with no political affiliations but the decision by Pheu Thai to not field a candidate has seemingly maintained scepticism on this point.


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