A day after leaving the ruling party, Somsak says he’s joining Pheu Thai


A Pheu Thai-led government can succeed in addressing the needs of Thai citizens, especially their economic needs, Somsak Thepsutin, the former justice minister, said a press conference on Friday while announcing that he will apply to join the country’s largest opposition party.

Displaying his resignation letter from his Cabinet position and leadership role in the ruling Palang Pracharath Party, as well as an application to join Pheu Thai, he said:

“I believe that a Pheu Thai government will be responsive to the people, especially economically.”

Somsak along with Suriya Juangroongruangkit, former industry minister, resigned from ruling party on Thursday.

Somsak said on Friday that he had no conflict with his former party. However, because the coalition it led was formed by disparate political parties it was difficult to form policies, he said.

Pheu Thai has a strong working team, Somsak said.

By joining Pheu Thai he can help it win a landslide victory in the upcoming general election, he said. The election is expected in May. Somsak said he will apply to join the party on Monday.

Somsak thanked Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, Deputy Prime Minister and Palang Pracharath Party leader Prawit Wongsuwan, and House speaker Chuan Leekpai for allowing him to participate in politics.

Pheu Thai is ready to welcome him and Suriya into the party, Somsak said.

It is up to Pheu Thai to decide whether or not it will work with Palang Pracharath or appoint him to run a ministry, he said.

When asked if Pheu Thai had promised him a ministerial position, Somsak said he was not thinking about being appointed to run a ministry. Previously, he had been disappointed when he was not appointed to a ministerial position he had hoped for, he explained.