Narumon Pinyosinwat, a key member of the ruling Palang Pracharath Party (PPRP) and a potential party-list candidate, has opted out of the upcoming election to make way for younger politicians.
Ms Narumon, who was placed in fifth spot in the 2019 election, held a press conference at the party's headquarters yesterday to announce her decision amid reports that she was the 20th candidate on the list.
She rejected speculation that she had chosen not to contest the May 14 polls because she felt hurt by the party's decision.
She said she wants young politicians to have the same opportunity she was previously given, and without any sacrifice being made, they would struggle to get such a chance.
Ms Narumon said she had already informed PPRP leader Prawit Wongsuwon and the party's executive board of her decision, which will lead to a review of party-list candidates.
The PPRP treasurer, who is directing the party's election bid in Bangkok, said she does not have to be an MP in order to work for the party and the public.
The party is set to announce the names of all 400 of its candidates on March 30 after recently showcasing candidates competing for the 33 Bangkok constituencies. The PPRP has widely predicted it will win ten seats from the party-list system.
In Prayut's orbit
Former Pheu Thai MP for Uttaradit Saranwut Saranket has joined the United Thai Nation Party (UTN), saying he was touched by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha's contributions and wants to help him win the next poll.
Mr Saranwut said he never thought he would end up supporting Gen Prayut, but he had a change of heart after realising there is no real "democratic party" and seeing how dedicated Gen Prayut is to working to serve the public interest and laying a foundation for future development.
He expressed confidence that the country would develop further if Gen Prayut returned as head of the government to serve out the remaining two years. He pledged to capture at least two seats for the party -- one by him and the other by his daughter.
The former MP scoffed at Pheu Thai's landslide victory goal, saying the party did not stand a chance of scoring an outright majority after bleeding MPs and facing strong competition from the Move Forward Party (MFP).
Pheu Thai booted Mr Saranwut out of the party in 2021 after its ethics and disciplinary committee found his conduct had brought Pheu Thai's name into disrepute.
He joined the Pheu Chart Party and moved to the Seri Ruam Thai Party before switching to the UTN, where he was extended a warm welcome by Gen Prayut and key party figures.
Pheu Thai's big reveal
The Pheu Thai Party has finalised its party-list candidates and will announce three prime ministerial candidates on April 4, according to deputy leader Phumtham Wechayachai.
He said the party list with 100 candidates, in alphabetical order, is ready for background checks and will be submitted for primary voting before a final review.
He said the party's election campaign would kick off as soon as candidacy registration has been completed, adding large campaign rallies are expected to draw over 10,000 people.
A party source said primary voting would take place next week at party branches or representative offices across the country.
Key Pheu Thai figures, including middle-ranking and junior officials who have active roles, are expected to be on the list. Somsak Thepsutin and Suriya Juangroongruangkit who recently defected from the PPRP, may be included, said the source.
Chartpattanakla Party leader Korn Chatikavanij yesterday introduced four Bangkok candidates with experience in the business sector.
Woranon Asawakittimethin is a successful real estate executive with over a decade in asset management. He has been nominated for constituencies in Sathon, Pathumwan and Ratchathewi.
Next, Pradya Ungrangsee, a millionaire businessman from a frozen food exporter, is a candidate for constituencies in Bang Kholaem and Yannawa.
Nantaphan Suppattarapong, a candidate for Phra Nakhon, Pomprap Sattruphai, Samphanthawong, Bang Rak and Dusit, owns a health and wellness business that is backing many public health policies.
Prin Thongpussa, a candidate for Watthana and Klong Toey, is an executive of PT Marco Co Ltd and Igloo Broker Co Ltd.