ASIA NEWS NETWORK
WE KNOW ASIA BETTER
Thai ruling party to nullify Bangkok poll results
Publication Date : 12-03-2013
Thailand's Pheu Thai Party is pushing forward with its legal challenges to have the results of the Bangkok election and the win by Democrat candidate Sukhumbhand Pari-batra nullified.
Deputy PM Chalerm Yoobam-rung has even said that Pongsapat should delay his return to his police post until the Election Commission (EC) has decided about Sukhumbhand.
Former senator Ruangkrai Leekijwattana yesterday filed a petition with the Bangkok EC, seeking a probe against Democrat Phang Nga MP Party Jurin Laksanawisit for alleged mudslinging against the Pheu Thai Party during the Bangkok election rally.
Ruangkrai asked the Election Commission (EC) to check whether Jurin had violated local election law that could result in the dissolution of the Democrat Party while he was taking the rally stage at Benjasiri Park to help the Democrat candidate. Ruangkrai quoted Jurin as saying "the second group will not vote for the Pheu Thai because they will not choose a party which set the country ablaze".
Ruangkrai said Democrat leader Abhisit Vejjajiva and party spokesman Chavanond Intarako-malyasut were also present at the rally so they could be accused of supporting Jurin to commit the offence.
Abhisit, meanwhile, said the party was not worried about the delay in the EC's endorsing of Sukhumbhand as Bangkok governor. He said local election law stipulated the EC had to investigate electoral complaints filed before the election, and those filed after the election could be probed after endorsing the winner.
Meanwhile, the Pheu Thai Party has filed complaints with the EC that four key members of the Democrat Party slandered Pheu Thai's Pongsapat Pongcharoen during the election campaign, party spokesman Prompong Nopparit said. The four are Suthep Thaugsuban, Jurin Laksanawisit, Korn Chatikavanij and Issara Somchai.
Prompong said video evidence showed the four Democrats violated Article 57 of election law by giving speeches accusing Pong-sapat of misdemeanours during the campaign.
Last Wednesday, the EC delayed the endorsement of Sukhumbhand's victory for 30 days, pending investigation.
Election Commissioner Sodsri Satayathum said the EC had yet to endorse Sukhumbhand because there had been an electoral complaint against him filed with the EC and two complaints filed with the Bangkok EC. If both commissions came to different decisions, a committee would be appointed to make a final decision. If this committee cannot resolve the issue in 30 days, Sukhumbhand will be endorsed while the investigation continues.
Ruangkrai has been the key person in filing complaints against Sukhumbhand as well as the one against Democrat MP Sirichok Sopha over posts related to arson during the political turmoil in 2010, Democrat leader Abhisit Vejjajiva's remarks during election campaign that asked "What is the Democrats' number?" and Seree Wongmontha's remark about Pheu Thai Party's dominance if Pongsapat won.
He also asked the EC to check if Sukhumbhand had violated the election law by promoting the names of his advisers, which might exceed the number under the law.