Yingluck delays collecting MP endorsement document at EC, registration at Parliament


BANGKOK, July 20 — Thailand’s Pheu Thai Party prime minister-to-be Yingluck Shinawatra on Wednesday delayed her earlier plan to collect her Member of Parliament status endorsement document from the Election Commission (EC), and complete her registration at Parliament, saying she was waiting to go together with a group of Pheu Thai endorsed MPs.

The EC on Tuesday unanimously endorsed a second batch of 12 new MPs-elect including Ms Yingluck and outgoing Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva of the Democrat Party, but some key Red Shirt leaders, winning candidates on the party list, remain suspended.

A total of 370 MPs from 500 seats have been endorsed by EC so far — 259 constituency seats and 111 as party-list MPs.

To meet the minimum Constitutional requirement of 475, at least 105 more MPs must be endorsed for the first meeting of the Lower House of Parliament.

Ms Yingluck had earlier planned to pick up the document from the EC and then go to Parliament to register at 9am Wednesday but opted to wait for other Pheu Thai endorsed MPs who have not yet registered. She said the decision was not aimed at pressuring anyone.

The prime minister-in-waiting said that from this point in time, the party will put final touches on its policy statement but will not formally consider assignment of ministerial posts until she occupies the country’s top elected job.

The meeting with coalition parties will be held later after the EC completes its endorsement review of elected MPs status, she said.

Ms Yingluck also affirmed that the increase of the daily minimum wage to Bt300 was her party’s major policy which was aimed to help ease the cost of living of workers, but this has to be discussed with entrepreneurs or employers and agencies concerned to see the impact of and obstacles to the wage hike.

She reaffirmed that the Pheu Thai Party’s campaign pledges were practical and could be implemented as details of each policy platform had been studied thoroughly.