'Family' tour takes aim at Bhumjaithai
Red shirts turn out in droves for meet
Paetongtarn Shinawatra, the youngest daughter of former premier Thaksin Shinawatra, on Saturday led the Pheu Thai Party on a tour of Si Sa Ket province where it appeared to target the coalition Bhumjaithai Party.
Ms Paetongtarn, the Pheu Thai's chief of the Inclusion and Innovation Adviser Committees, addressed supporters in Uthumphon Phisai, Rasi Salai and Khukhan districts.
Also attending were Panthongtae Shinawatra, Ms Paetongtarn's brother, and Pheu Thai leader Cholnan Srikaew.
Red-shirt supporters turned up in droves to greet the Pheu Thai stalwarts at the airport in neighbouring Ubon Ratchathani.
The gatherings were titled "Lai Noo Tee Ngu Hao" (Chasing Away Rat and Beating the Cobras).
The theme was thought to be an attack on Bhumjaithai. "Noo" or rat is the nickname of Anutin Charnvirakul, the Bhumjaithai leader, while the "cobras" allude to the Pheu Thai's renegade members and defectors to the Bhumjaithai.
In the 2019 general election, the Pheu Thai won six MP seats and the Bhumjaithai two seats in Si Sa Ket.
Ms Paetongtarn told the crowd in Uthumphon Phisai that Pheu Thai would introduce new technology-assisted farming methods and alleviate poverty if enough people voted for the party to secure a landslide victory at the polls.
Ms Paetongtarn has been given the unofficial title of head of the "Pheu Thai Family" which is a campaign to reunite people, including the red shirts, who support the party ahead of the next general elections.
"If everyone wants to be better off, the first step is to hand us a landslide victory at the next polls," she told the gathering.
Ms Paetongtarn thanked supporters in Ubon Ratchathani and nearby areas who said she should put herself forward for the premiership and tackle economic woes.
She said she was grateful for the positive remarks and was happy that people believed in her. She also understood people had had enough of economic hardship under eight years of the Prayut Chan-o-cha administration.
People want the country to move forward and Pheu Thai has reinforced its people-centric stance. The country should not be held back by social division, she added.
Nattawut Saikuar, director of the Pheu Thai Family project, said the party needs to clinch a sweeping victory to claim an outright mandate to form a government.
Pheu Thai won the most MP seats, at 136, in the 2019 elections.
However, it failed to win over enough parties to form a coalition government.