Temporary regent to stand in as Thai crown prince asks for appropriate time to succeed

Updated: 2016-10-15 17:26


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Temporary regent to stand in as Thai crown prince asks for appropriate time to succeed

Thailand's Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn watches the annual Royal Ploughing Ceremony in central Bangkok, Thailand, May 13, 2015. [Photo/Agencies]

BANGKOK -- The head of Thailand's royal advisory council will stand in as regent before Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn formally succeeds his father, late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, Thai deputy prime minister Wissanu Krea-ngam said late Friday.

The constitution specified that president of Privy Council would act as temporary regent when the throne became vacant, said Wisanu at about 22:30 Friday local time, according to Thai Government House's official website.

Though he did not mention the specific name, the current Privy Council president, 96-year old Prem Tinsulanonda, is to act as temporary regent, if there is any necessary occasion.

Wisanu emphasized that there was no uncertainty about the succession, but there must be a regent for the time being in order not to create a gap.

He said that the regency will not last long and will end when the crown prince succeeds the throne.

"Since the Privy Council president is to act as temporary regent, the Privy Council have to elect a new one to act as the president," Wisanu added.

Thai prime minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has said the crown prince wants to grieve with the people and leave the formal succession for "an appropriate time".

According to Thai constitution, the cabinet shall notify president of parliament, or now the president of National Legislative Assembly (NLA) that the throne became vacant and late king had already appointed an heir apparent, after which the president will convene members for acknowledgement and will invite him to ascend the throne.

Considering the crown prince's request, the government has not notified the NLA president yet but when the right time comes, the government will be ready to move on with the process, according to Wissanu.

The world's longest-reigning monarch, King Bhumibol, died on Thursday in Bangkok's Siriraj Hospital, at the age of 88.