Bangkok (AP) – After a brief joint meeting held on Tuesday 29 November, the Cabinet, following a 1924 law on succession, submitted HRH Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn’s name to the National Legislative Assembly, where members formally acknowledged him as the new monarch.
“I invite everyone to stand up and extend their best wishes to the new King,” said National Assembly president Pornpetch Wichitcholchai. His statement was followed by a cheer of “Long Live the King” by all assembly members.
Pornpetch said he will now formally invite the 64-year-old Vajiralongkorn to take the throne, the 10th in the Chakri dynasty, which was founded in 1782.
Defense Minister Prawit Wongsuwan revealed after the meeting that officials would have an audience with HRH the Crown Prince on Thursday.
According to procedure, the President of the National Legislative Assembly has to formally invite the Crown Prince to become monarch before proclaiming the new king to the public.
HRH Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn’s father, the much-revered HM King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who took the throne in 1946, died on Oct. 13 at age 88.
In 1972, His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej designated Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn-his second child and only son-to be his successor.
Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha said shortly after HM King Bhumibol’s death that the Crown Prince told him that he did not want to immediately assume the throne in order to allow time to mourn his father.
Gen. Prayuth’s government declared a full year of mourning for public offices, and most Thais have been somberly dressed in black or white since HM the late King’s death, while revelry has been discouraged.
Huge crowds have been paying respects to HM the late King’s remains at the Grand Palace in Bangkok. His body will be cremated in an elaborate ceremony that will take place sometime in the new year.
The official coronation of HRH Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn will take place only after the cremation.
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