July 26, 2023
BANGKOK – Pheu Thai Party suddenly cancelled its plan to hold a meeting with its seven alliance partners on Tuesday afternoon, without providing a reason initially.
It later told reporters via Line that its mission to seek support from parties outside the bloc had failed and it was still unclear whether the next round of voting for PM would be held on Thursday as scheduled. It said it will wait for the three whips’ decision before it calls a meeting with the coalition. The whips are set to meet on Wednesday.
The meeting was first set to be held at the party headquarters on Tuesday at 2pm before Pheu Thai sent out an urgent Line message saying it had been shifted to Parliament at 3pm.
The reason given for the shift was that it was avoiding a repeat of Sunday’s incident when protesters stormed the Pheu Thai head office to protest its talks with partners of the exiting coalition government.
Not long after relocating the meeting, Pheu Thai then sent a Line message saying: “Today the meeting of eight coalition parties is cancelled.”
It is believed Pheu Thai was set to meet its seven partners to inform them about the progress of its efforts to lobby support from parties outside the bloc for the Pheu Thai PM candidate.
Over the weekend, Pheu Thai met with representatives of the eight parties that were partners of the outgoing coalition government, and they all declared that they would not vote for Pheu Thai if Move Forward was still part of its coalition.
Meanwhile, sources from smaller parties of the Pheu Thai-led bloc said their parties have not yet been formally informed of the meeting’s cancellation, adding that they expect the meeting to be postponed to Wednesday morning.
They noted that the meeting may have been cancelled because the ombudsmen had asked the Constitutional Court to suspend the upcoming PM vote on Thursday until the court issues a ruling on the joint Parliament sitting last week.
Last week, parliamentarians are believed to have violated the charter by blocking Move Forward PM candidate Pita Limjaroenrat from being renominated as PM candidate.