Thailand’s King Maha Vajiralongkorn has endorsed Srettha Thavisin as the nation’s new prime minister, a day after the former property tycoon won a parliament vote by a near two-third majority.
(Bloomberg) — Thailand’s King Maha Vajiralongkorn has endorsed Srettha Thavisin as the nation’s new prime minister, a day after the former property tycoon won a parliament vote by a near two-third majority.
Srettha will formally receive the royal endorsement at a ceremony scheduled at 6 p.m. local time, Kampee Distakorn, a spokesman for the House of Representatives Speaker Wan Muhamad Noor Matha, told reporters on Wednesday.
Srettha, 61, is Thailand’s first new leader since 2014, when former army chief Prayuth Chan-Ocha staged a coup. He was backed by 482 lawmakers from a maximum of 747 in a joint sitting of the parliament on Tuesday.
The new premier will lead an 11-party coalition government that includes Pheu Thai, backed by former premier Thaksin Shinawatra, and military aligned parties. He is expected to finalize his cabinet line-up in the coming days.
Srettha’s win came hours after Thaksin returned to Thailand for the first time in 15 years as part of a deal with a military establishment that has repeatedly ousted his political allies over the past two decades. Pheu Thai had finished second to the upstart Move Forward party, which had pushed for changes to a law that restricts criticism of the nation’s powerful monarchy.
Thaksin, who was sent to prison upon his arrival to serve an eight-year jail term for his role in corruption cases, was moved to a hospital on Wednesday after he complained of chest pain and hypertension.
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