In Thailand, the general who lead the coup in late May has been chosen to be Prime Minister by the National Legislative Assembly. CCTV America’s Tony Cheng reports from Bangkok.
The vote was unanimous and expected, and confirms that Prayuth Chan-ocha will add prime minister to his current roles as leader of the Military Junta and head of the army. The appointment will do little to quell fears that Thailand’s new government will just be an extension of military rule by Generals in civilian clothes.
The army was making its presence felt outside parliament on Thursday. The hand-picked members of the National Legislative Assembly (NLA) arrived to rubber stamp the military Junta’s choice as prime minister.
Outside the parliament building, the NLA members assembled for a photo. Few of them are well known to the public, but they are all come from backgrounds that represent Thailand’s traditional elite. While the uniforms were left in the barracks, the dominance of the military was overwhelming.
The appointment of prime minister was a brief and perfunctory act. The vote was unanimous with 191 in agreement and 3 technical abstentions. The coup leader won by a landslide.
General Prayuth Chan-ocha had maintained a discreet distance, instead of choosing to attend a military ceremony outside Bangkok. Chan-ocha said he would not comment until the Palace had confirmed his position.
As the general boardse a helicopter to return to the capital, he will be aware the job he takes on is a hard one. Only one Thailand prime minister has successfully completed an elected term.