Thai political history turned a new page on Sunday when a transgender candidate won a provincial election. The result became a media phenomenon that drew attention across the country, and spread across the world.
News outlets from Japan, Germany, Mexico, USA and the UK all published reports about the landmark result.
“Nan people voted for me, showing that Thai people respect human rights,” Nok Yonlada – or Kirkkong Suanyos, as she is named on her ID card – the new Nan Provincial Administrative Organisation (PAO) member-elect, said in an enthusiastic interview with The Nation.
Nok got 3,808 votes, while her rival, Pawat Sattayawong, followed with 3,659 votes. The unexpected result made her the first transgender person to get elected in Thai political history.