Poramet Ngampichet of the Rao Rak Pattaya group is poised to be declared winner of Sunday’s election for Pattaya City mayor, with the unofficial vote count showing he is clearly ahead of the three other candidates.
In the unofficial tally announced by the Pattaya election committee, Mr Poramet came first with 14,349 votes.
Sinchai Watthasartsathorn of the Pattaya Ruam Chai group was second with 12,477 votes, followed by Kittisak Nilwatthanathochai of the Progressive Movement with 8,759 and Sakchai Tanghor, an independent, with 990 votes.
Of the 78,081 eligible voters, 38,320 (49.96%) turned out to vote – far behind the goal of 70%.
Officals said 36,575 (95.45%) of the ballot paper cast were called valid, and 1,001 (2.61%) invalid. The rest, 744 (1.94%) were “no vote” ballots.
In the election of city councillors, Mr Poramet’s team of candidates clinched all 24 seats in the Pattaya City Council, from the four constituencies.
The election results have yet to be endorsed by the Election Commission.
Mr Poramet, a former Chon Buri MP and former adviser to the culture minister, is close to Sonthaya Kunplome, who was appointed Pattaya City mayor in September 2018 by the Prayut Chan-o-cha government.
Mr Sonthaya did not contest Sunday’s Pattaya mayoral election. He sent Mr Poramet to run in his place. Mr Sonthaya is reportedly gearing up for the coming general election.
Speaking after learning of the unofficial rresult, Mr Poramet said that with support from the 24 city councillors he hoped to make Pattaya a liveable city and would work for a quick revival of the local economy, particularly the tourism sector.