Election defeat okay as Prayut has ‘had enough’, says aide
General Prayut Chan-o-cha will probably rest now as he has had enough after eight years in power, the outgoing prime minister’s close aide said.
The comment was made by outgoing PM’s Office Minister Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana while he was speaking to reporters at Government House on Monday morning.
However, Thanakorn’s declaration contradicted that of United Thai Nation Party (UTNP) leader Pirapan Salirathavibhaga, who said Prayut will stay in politics as the party’s chief strategist.
When asked if Prayut has spoken to him about his future plans now that UTNP will not be in a coalition government, Thanakorn said: “He didn’t say so, but I believe he must have had enough.
“I think he has served the country all his life [through the Army] and as prime minister for seven or eight years.
“I believe all Thais know that he has done a lot for the country. He does not have a tainted record and was never involved in any corruption scandals.”
Thanakorn said he will provide moral support to Prayut and assure him that electoral defeat is normal in politics.
As for whether Prayut has really “had enough”, Thanakorn admitted that the outgoing PM had not sent out any messages or signalled about his political future.
“This is my own assumption. When I talked to him, I realised he did not have any time of his own. I like to balance my time between work and leisure, but General Prayut had no such options,” he said.
“I think happiness lies in this [balancing time]. His aim was to work for the people, but with election results like this, we have no choice but to accept them.”