CHIANGRAI TIMES – Salakjit Tiyaphairat the wife of former House speaker Yongyuth Tiyaphairat was clearly ahead last night to win the election for Chiang Rai provincial administration organisation (PAO) chairman.
With 97% of votes counted, Salakjit Tiyaphairat received more than 330,000 votes, leaving her three main opponents far behind.
Former PAO head Rattana Chongsutthanamani came second with about 167,000 votes. She was the favorite to win the race, especially after her husband, Wanchai, won the race to become Chiang Rai mayor early this month.
Phanida Manotham, of the Tawan Daeng group, and former Pheu Thai MP Sarit Uengaphinan, supported by the Siang Prachachon for Democracy faction, garnered 3,099 and 8,675 votes respectively.
Both candidates claimed to have the blessings of two red-shirt United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship factions in the province.
Salakjit Tiyaphairat yesterday thanked residents of Chiang Rai for their overwhelming support.
She pledged to proceed with her policies as soon as her victory was endorsed by the Election Commission (EC).
In the PAO race in Surin province, Kittipat Rungthanakiat backed by a faction of the Bhumjaithai Party under the de facto leadership of Newin Chidchob, had a commanding lead last night.
With 98% of the vote counted, Mr Kittipat had 267,316 votes, ahead of two-time PAO chairman Thongchai Mungcharoenporn.
Mr Thongchai, who received support from the ruling Pheu Thai Party, had 206,341 votes.
Meanwhile, in the mayoral contest in Nakhon Ratchasima’s Muang district, early returns showed that incumbent mayor Surawut Cherdchai was leading the race after 92% of the vote had been counted.
But Mr Surawut was accused of violating the poll regulations when he appeared in a boxing competition on May 18 at the provincial hall.
In Phichit’s PAO election, former PAO chairman Chartchai Chiamsripong was leading with more than 129,000 votes. His main opponent Wichian Thianchaipong received 63,000 votes.
EC member Prapan Naigowit said yesterday he was satisfied with the PAO elections in the various provinces.
Mr Prapan inspected the election in Nakhon Phanom yesterday following a report of fierce competition between two candidates Somchob Nitipoj and Nattapat Yongchaiyudh.
With 60% of votes counted, Ms Nattapat was leading with 76,394 votes, while Mr Somchob was close behind with 67,185 votes.
Salakjit Tiyaphairat received more than 330,000 votes, leaving her three main opponents far behind.