By Linda Khoo
BANGKOK, July 10 (Bernama) -- Thailand has named the new cabinet lineup of Prime Minister General Prayuth Chan o-cha following the March 24 General Election, the Royal Gazette said today.
King Maha Vajiralongkorn had endorsed the cabinet list and it was announced in the Royal Gazette.
The endorsement came after weeks of speculation as Prayuth’s coalition, made up of 19 parties, were fighting for posts.
In the new cabinet lineup, Prayuth named five deputy prime ministers including his loyalists from the military government, namely Prawit Wongsuwan, Somkid Jatusripitak and Wissanu Krea-ngam. The other two new deputy prime ministers are Democrat party leader, Jurin Laksanawisit and Bhumjaithai party leader, Anutin Charnvirakul.
Democrat and Bhumjaithai which joined Palang Pracharat Party (PPRP) in backing Prayuth as prime minister to form the coalition government also get some important economic portfolios including commerce, transport and tourism.
Prayuth was also named as Defence Minister while Jurin is the Commerce Minister and Anutin, Public Health Minister.
Meanwhile, PPRP party leader Uttama Savanayana was named as the new Finance Minister, Democrat’s secretary general Chalermchai Sri-on as Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister, Bhumjaithai’s secretary general Saksayam Chidchob as Transport Minister while Pipat Ratchakitprakarn, also from Bhumjaithai, is Tourism and Sports Minister.
However, some key ministerial posts remain with former ministers of the junta government, including Don Pramudwinai who is Foreign Minister and Anupong Paojinda, the Interior Minister
Prayuth, the former army chief and junta leader was elected as prime minister five years after the military coup, with a parliament comprising 500 members of parliament and 250 senators that were appointed by the junta.
Meanwhile, in a statement, deputy government spokesman, Lt General Weerachon Sukontapatipak said Prayuth called on all ministers to cooperate and serve the people and country.
“Prayuth also urged the people to have confidence in the new government that will drive the nation to greater heights. The new government belongs to every Thai and we will work for all,” he said.