The parliament president has put off the next parliamentary vote for a new prime minister from Friday. The decision came just after the Constitutional Court announced it was postponing its ruling on parliament's resolution to reject the renomination of Move Forward Party (MFP) leader Pita Limjaroenrat for prime minister.
Wan Muhamad Noor Matha said on Thursday that he had to postpone Friday's vote because the court had yet to rule on Mr Pita's renomination rejection.
"The court has yet to rule on the complaints about the prime ministerial vote and a request (by the Ombudsman) to postpone the next vote for prime minister," Mr Wan said.
The Constitutional Court said in a statement on Thursday morning — 81 days after voters went to the polls — that the complaints need careful consideration.
According to the statement, the court had ordered its staff to study relevant information to support its consideration because the petitions involved issues concerning the constitutional monarchy, and the court is expected to make a decision on Aug 16.
Complainants in the case were Assoc Prof Pornchai Theppanya and Assist Prof Boonsong Chalaythorn who voted for MFP in the May 14 general election. Another complainant was MFP MP Panyarat Pusitanont.
They filed their petitions with the court through the Ombudsman complaining the parliament's rejection of Mr Pita's renomination affected their constitutional rights. They sought a court order for the parliament to put off its vote for prime minister pending its ruling.
The Ombudsman forwarded these complaints to the charter court last month.
In a joint sitting of the House and the Senate on July 13, Mr Pita did not receive a majority vote to become the prime minister. His renomination was submitted on July 19, but the parliament rejected it on the same day, citing a parliamentary session regulation that prohibited the resubmission of a failed motion within the same parliament session.
Mr Pita was earlier nominated for the premiership by an eight-party coalition alliance, which included his election-winning MFP and the first runner-up Pheu Thai Party.
However, Pheu Thai announced on Wednesday that it was withdrawing from the eight-party alliance and would nominate its prime ministerial candidate Srettha Thavisin to vie for the prime minister's seat in the next parliamentary vote.