REFORM OF the Democrat Party will automatically lead to a revamp of party leadership, Democrat MP Alongkorn Ponlaboot said yesterday.
“I have never striven to replace the party leader, but Democrats should not put any individual above their party,” he said. Alongkorn refused to speculate on the leadership of Abhisit Vejjajiva, saying the issue at hand is about strengthening the party.
When the time comes, the party convention would decide on the leadership issue, he said. Commenting on anticipated reform, he said the party would be overhauled in order to ensure victory at the next general election.
The Democrats could not afford to stay unchanged because the party did not garner a boost in public support despite government blunders in administering the country, he said.
He went on to explain that the recent push for reform had almost caused Democrat secretary-general Chalermchai Sri-on to step down due to certain opponents of change.
He said proponents of reform would not try to push their way but strive to manage the differences without triggering division. Proponents, including him, would keep prodding the party to embrace reform and would not quit, even if they had to face setbacks, he said.
“Reform is meant for improvement and not party divisions,” he said.
He said he would go along with any decisions made by the majority of Democrats. Repeating the party split, such as the one caused by the January 10 clique, would not be allowed, he added.
Sources from the Democrats said other parties have made overtures to Alongkorn and Chalermchai to join them, especially a “mid-choice” political party. They offered both Democrats high ranks on their party list – including ministry positions, deputy party leader or party secretary-general. But Alongkorn refused, saying he would serve one term in the party, and if the Democrats did not reform he would move to another.