Thai Prime Minister’s candidate votes in a marijuana print shirt

BANGKOK: Thai Minister of Health and cannabis attorney Anutin Charnvirakul turned heads in Sunday’s election as he arrived to vote at a polling station wearing a dark shirt with bright green marijuana leaves.
The 56-year-old is the candidate for prime minister of the Bhumjaithai party, which campaigned on a promise to promote medical cannabis after successfully pushing for the substance to be decriminalized last year.
With no associated regulations in place, recreational use has surged, angering conservatives in the Southeast Asian country. Anutin promised that if re-elected, he would tighten regulations to limit recreational use and restrict the use of cannabis for medical purposes only.
Anutin smiled as he stepped out of a voting booth and refused to answer reporters’ questions about the symbolism of his shirt.
His party, which ran on the same platform in the 2019 elections, then came in fifth place, giving him a position in the current army-backed government. He is likely to repeat that performance this year.
Polls will close at 5 p.m. local time (1000 GMT) in Thailand, where 52 million eligible voters could upend the nearly decade-long status quo of a military-backed government led by a retired general , Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha.
Prayuth takes on the populist platform of the opposition Pheu Thai party, backed by the billionaire Shinawatra family, which won all the elections in thailand since 2001.


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