About 60 NLA members to resign to join Senate

About 60 members of the National Legislative Assembly (NLA) are expected to tender their resignations in the next two days to be ready to join the military-appointed Senate.

NLA vice president Phirasak Porchit said today that about 60 assemblymen, himself included, as well as NLA president Pornpetch Wichitcholachai, NLA vice president Surachai Liangboonlertchai, Somchai Sawaengkarn and Klanarong Chantik, had been handpicked to become new senators.

It is reported that the NLA members were chosen by the selection committee headed by Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan. Their applications to join the 250-member Senate have been kept confidential by the selection committee, which has come under heavy criticism for the alleged lack of transparency in their selection practice.

Mr. Phirasak dismissed concerns that the appointed senators would have a problem working with MPs from the opposition, saying that he believes all legislators, despite their political difference, will be able to work together for the good of the country.

Regarding the nomination of the prime minister in the joint session of the Senate and House of Representatives, the NLA vice president said that MPs should be given the first priority in submitting their candidates and he expected this rule to be accepted by all parties.

The Palang Pracharat has nominated General Prayut Chan-o-cha as its prime ministerial candidate.

The NLA held its last meeting today to deliberate some wording of a law.  Before the meeting, NLA president Pornpetch led the assemblymen in taking a vow, before the portrait of HM the King, to perform their duties with honesty and loyalty to the King.

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