11 July 2024

Thailand’s “Red-shirt” followers packed the Ubon Ratchathani provincial airport this morning to welcome to Paetongtarn Shinawatra, who led key Pheu Thai party members on a campaign trip to wrestle back control of Si Sa Ket, following the defection of three MPs to the Bhumjaithai party.

The three Si Sa Ket MPs had voted in support of the government’s budget bill for 2023 in its first reading early this month, in defiance of the party whip.

The group travelled by car to neighbouring Si Sa Ket, where rallies were to be held today (Saturday) in Uthomporn Phisai, Khun Han and Rasi Salai districts.

At the first of those stops, Paetongtarn, head of the “Pheu Thai Family” and advisory chair of the party’s innovation and public participation efforts, addressed a big crowd of supporters, saying that they should vote for the party in the next general election, if they want a better future for their families and to rid themselves of poverty.

She said that the first thing that they should do is to help the party win the next election by a landslide, to usher the party into government.

Former red-shirt leader Nattawut Saikua, who re-joined the party this week and was appointed director of the “Pheu Thai Family”, told the crowd that the party is not concerned about the defection of three MPs, because the party will wrestle back their three parliamentary seats.

Nattawut’s first task in his new position is to recruit new “family” members in Si Sa Ket and the rest of the country, in preparation for the next election.

Veteran Pheu Thai member Chaturon Chaisang said the party will start its general election campaign in the Northeast, because it is important political turf that will change the government and the country for the better.