27th Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva

17 12 2008

One day after the general election result announced in December 2007, Democrat Party (DP) leader said publicly that if People’s Power Party (PPP) could not form a coalition government, DP would do it meaning to say that Democrat Party was ready to form a government even then. I remember how disappointed I was at the moment to hear such a boastful statement. However, to its disappointment, the lack of house majority DP could not make it.

Subsequently, we witness the rise and fall of nominee prime ministers beginning with Samak followed by Somchai and recently the dissolution of PPP itself. We also witness the prostest of People Alliance for Democracy (PAD). They moved into the Government House and stayed there for 3 months and later blocked the two main airports of the city of Bangkok.

It was announced on Monday 15th December 2008 that Abhisit is now the 27th Prime Minister of Thailand, follwowing the extra parliamentary session that morning, with the votes of 235 against Puea Thai and its coalition who gained 198 votes. It was a very narrow win with only 37 seats, considering that there will be about 30 seats to contest in the by-election in January 2009 and votes are split among the parties in the previous ruling coalition. This means that when they are asked to vote to pass certain laws, DP can not be sure that all the lawmakers who have crossed over will always vote for DP.

Despite this vulnerability, I as many others still hope that DP under the leadership of Abhisit can establish a stable coalition government that lasts at least one term, 3 years from now. Then he will have to call for a fresh election to gain public mandate to his rule. I also hope that my judgement about him and people around him are wrong. I hope that he will take care well of the rural poor and continue the good projects created by the former Thai Rak Thai (of Thaksin). I hope that he listens to opinions and comments from people who do not necessaruly have the same opinion as him. I hope that as a British graduate he would be independent enough and will not follow bad example of old leaders in the party.

This we will ahve to see the face of his cabinet whether he will have the gut to invite good people to work with him and not give important cabinet profile to only his good friend like Korn Jatikavanich who is sure to be Minister of Finance.

My last hope for this new prime minister is that he rescues all of us from the impact of global economic crisis that will hit us hard next year.


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