Statement by H.E. General Prayut Chan-o-cha,
Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Thailand, on 1 December 2016
Dear fellow Thais,
The Government wishes to announce to the Thai people in the Kingdom and abroad that Thailand now has a new King. In a ceremony held at the Amphon Satharn Villa, Dusit Palace, the President of the National Legislative Assembly, acting as the President of the National Assembly, has invited the Heir to the Throne to ascend. The historic ceremony was witnessed by the Regent pro tempore, the Prime Minister, and the President of the Supreme Court. The Heir to the Throne graciously accepted the invitation. Later, the announcement was made by the National Legislative Assembly to inform the general public. These proceedings were carried out in accordance with the Constitution of the Kingdom of Thailand, the Palace Law on Succession, and ancient royal traditions, and out of respect for the wishes of His Royal Highness Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn, who initially stated that during the period when His Royal Highness and the people were in the deepest sorrow with the passing of His Majesty the late King, one should not yet proceed with the matter of ascension to the throne. He deemed it appropriate to allow a period of time for the people to pay their respects to the late King. Now with the holding of the royal merit-making ceremony to mark 50 days after the passing of the late King, and with more than one million people having thus far been allowed to pay their respects to the late King, royal permission has been sought to proceed in accordance with the law.
In accordance with ancient royal traditions and laws, as well as international traditions that a kingdom should not be without a monarch on the throne, the commencement of the new reign is therefore effective as of 13 October 2016.
Now, His Royal Highness Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn, who has been the Heir to the Throne for 44 years, since 1972, has ascended as His Majesty King Rama X of the Royal House of Chakri. He is accorded full royal prerogatives as stipulated by the Constitution. With regard to the next process for the “Royal Coronation Ceremony” to be conducted in accordance with ancient royal traditions, the process would be at His discretion. His Majesty the King has decided that the ceremony should be carried out after the end of the Royal Cremation Ceremony for His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej.
Dear fellow Thais,
The royal approach for sustainable development, or the principles that His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, Rama IX, the Royal Father, laid throughout the 70 years of His reign, will serve as a strong foundation. When this is combined with the faith and pledge of allegiance that the people of Siam have wholeheartedly expressed since 13 October 2016 and formally reaffirmed on the morning of 22 November that they would perform good deeds for the Royal Father, would remember His teachings, forever be humble subjects of the late King, and pledged to live up to His aspirations to think well, speak well, do well, be honest, uphold unity, and live modestly, the Government believes that all these good deeds will be comparable to a solid bastion on firm foundation. Importantly, with the wisdom and leadership of His Majesty the new King, everything will proceed smoothly amidst our pure perseverance.
His Majesty the new King is the Heir to the Throne who was trusted by His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej and accompanied the late King to work in various areas for more than 44 years. Now, He has become Head of State and the pillar of the whole Thai nation, succeeding His Royal Father. He has followed the footsteps of His Royal Parents – His Majesty King Rama IX and Her Majesty Queen Sirikit, who have fully and completely performed Their duties. Although we all know that to be parted from the person we love and respect is suffering, although the loss and sadness are an undeniable crisis, we should turn this crisis into an opportunity and turn grief into the strength of the land. Although the late King who was the strength of the land is no longer with us physically to protect us, the strength of the land will prevail, with the power of faith and confidence in the royal aspirations and approach of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej. His Majesty the new King, the beloved son of the late King, will carry forward His leadership and legacy.
Dear fellow Thais,
May all of us unite in thought and may the might of past monarchs, such as His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who is recognized as the “Development King”, provide protection for His Majesty the new King as the heart and soul of the Thai people and the Thai nation. And may Thailand be able to develop successfully, bringing about prosperity, peace, unity and harmony in response to the royal aspirations, under a democratic administration with the King as Head of State. Long may He reign.