Prayuth Chan-ocha - Thailand Headlines Today Story

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An upstart Thai opposition politician vying to become prime minister called for change on Wednesday, as both houses of parliament convened for the first time since a 2014 coup to vote for either him or the chief of the ruling junta to be leader. The vote will officially restore civilian rule after more than five years under junta leader Prayuth Chan-ocha, who has been nominated to stay on as prime minister by a coalition led by the pro-army Palang Pracharat Party. The retired general is considered to have a big advantage over Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit, a charismatic political newcomer nominated by the opposition Democratic Front of seven parties that want to remove the military from politics. “Coups will only lead Thailand to dead-ends … We must make parliament a place of honour, not a place where people’s faith goes to die,” Prayuth Chan-ocha said in a speech just outside the parliamentary chamber. “I am ready to be Thailand’s next prime minister … I will be the prime minister of change.” Thanathorn was barred from taking up his seat in the lower house last month after being suspended, pending a ruling by the Constitutional Court on his alleged illegal holding of shares in a media company. He denied the allegation and said the case was the latest politically motivated bid to block him from politics. The vote for a prime minister who will form the next government this month, comes 10 weeks after a March 24 general election the opposition says was…

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