The opposition Puea Thai Party was jubilant when it was widely reported that a member of the royal family would join the party’s ranks.
The news that Maj-Gen Mom Chao Chulcherm Yugala might join the party was said to have come from Gen Chavalit Yongchaiyudh, the party’s advisory chairman and a former prime minister.
The reports said that the prince had contacted Khunying Sudarat Keyuraphan, former deputy leader of the disssolved Thai Rak Thai Party, and expressed his interest in joining Puea Thai and in contesting a seat in a Bangkok constituency.
Former PM Chavalit Yongchaiyudh
Puea Thai spokesman Prompong Nopparit said at a press conference on Sunday that he was aware of the reports but would wait for confirmation from either Gen Chavalit or the royal member himself.
Ousted former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra's legal adviser Noppadol Pattama said that if a member of royalty joined the Puea Thai it would help dispel allegations that the party is not loyal to the monarchy.
The feel-good atmosphere in the opposition party was short-lived.
MC Chulcherm later categorically denied that he had any intention of entering politics or of joining the Puea Thai.
“I am a royal, how can I get involved in politics?” he said in an interview with another newspaper.
He said he had met both Gen Chavalit and Khunying Sudarat separately, but they never discussed politics - only sponsorship of a football club he has been following.