Pojaman may lead party
Khunying Pojaman Shinawatra is the front-runner to lead a new political party formed from the remnants of the Thai Rak Thai, should it be dissolved, a source said yesterday.
Many Thai Rak Thai politicians from the North and Northeast agreed the wife of ousted prime minister Thaksin was the best choice to head a new group, the party source said.
The Thai Rak Thai could be dissolved if it is found to have committed fraud in last year's elections. Its executives could be banned from politics for five years, too. The case is before the Constitution Tribunal now.
A Chiang Mai civic group leader close to the party, Promsak Sanpho, yesterday corroborated the move.
The activist said he discussed the matter with some former Thai Rak Thai members of Parliament who agreed Pojaman should be approached.
Other former Thai Rak Thai members of Parliament said they were unaware of this development. Nevertheless, they expressed support for Pojaman, saying
she was an appropriate leader.
The tribunal is scheduled to rule on separate electoral-fraud cases against Thai Rak Thai and the Democrat parties on May 30.
According to post-coup amend-ments to the Political Party Act, executives of parties dissolved for fraud will be banned from politics for five years.
Thai Rak Thai said recently it would petition His Majesty the King if the amended punishment were applied.
Former Thai Rak Thai member for Chiang Rai, Samart Kaewmeechai, said Pojaman had substantial support. He believed most former MPs still attached to the party wanted her to lead them.
He said Pojaman played important roles in the party when Thaksin led it. "She was behind his success in politics. So, she's the most suitable to be party leader."
Former member for Udon Thani Thirachai Saenkaew was unaware of moves to appoint Pojaman head of a new party.
"But, personally, I think all Thai Rak Thai former MPs agree Khunying Pojaman is suitable. She is very close to Thaksin and has the potential to become party leader," he said.