In a recent statement, Pheu Thai Party leader Cholnan Srikaew emphasized the importance of prioritizing the opinions of its members over those of coalition allies. He revealed that the majority of Pheu Thai members want their party to hold the post of House speaker. While an official stance on which party should receive the position has yet to be determined, Pheu Thai currently has 141 House seats, compared to the election-winning Move Forward Party’s 151 seats and their six coalition allies’ combined total of 22 seats.
Srikaew acknowledged that Pheu Thai is deeply concerned about the feelings of all parties involved in the decision-making process. However, he placed the greatest emphasis on the people who have granted them power, followed by the views of the party’s members and MPs, and ultimately, those of the coalition parties. Although Pheu Thai members and MPs have not reached a consensus on the House speaker issue, Srikaew admitted that his party is making a significant effort to prevent the situation from spiraling out of control.
When asked if Pheu Thai members could nominate Suchart Tancharoen, a Pheu Thai list MP and experienced politician who previously served as the first deputy House speaker, Srikaew stated that members have the right to make their proposal. He also dismissed a suggestion by Prachachat Party leader Wan Muhammad Nor Matha that Prachachat should have the second deputy’s seat due to having the third most MPs among coalition allies. With Pheu Thai’s 141 seats far outweighing Prachachat’s nine, Srikaew argued that if his party does not secure the main job, they should at least lay claim to both deputy positions.
Despite the ongoing debate surrounding the House speaker issue, Srikaew remains confident that the coalition will not falter. He expects that Pheu Thai and Move Forward will reach a resolution before the House convenes to vote for the speaker in July. Veteran politician and Pheu Thai list MP Adisorn Piangket expressed a similar sentiment, stating that nearly all Pheu Thai members want their party to hold the speaker’s seat, but they do not wish for the matter to impede the establishment of the new government.
According to Piangket, unresolved issues are traditionally decided by a House meeting. He asserted that the House does not belong to a single party and that no parties currently hold a majority of seats. In conclusion, Piangket emphasized the importance of Pheu Thai and Move Forward reaching an agreement, which would enable them to form a government under the leadership of Move Forward’s prime minister, Pita Limjaroenrat.