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Election

Charter court accepts EC, ombudsman petitions

THE CONSTITUTIONAL Court yesterday decided to accept for review the petitions submitted separately by the Election Commission and the Ombudsman that might lead to annulment of the February 2 general election.

Before the resolutions were announced, Pheu Thai legal expert Singthong Buachum petitioned the court to drop the two cases as well as the petition lodged by anti-government protest leader Thaworn Senneam concerning the legitimacy of the caretaker government. The court yesterday dropped Thaworn's case.

The petition forwarded by the Ombudsman on behalf of Thammasat University law lecturer Kittipong Kamolthamwong claimed that the election process was flawed because it was unfair. The EC's petition posed three questions to the Constitutional Court to rule on.

The first was whether the EC could go ahead and announce the opening of candidacy registration and a date for rerunning the balloting in 28 constituencies.

The second question was whether the EC had the mandate to issue such announcements or needed another Royal Decree to amend the decree dissolving the House of Representatives, which was the prerogative and responsibility of the prime minister.

The third was whether the new Royal Decree, if it is allowed, would need to be issued for only the 28 constituencies or for all constituencies, as the Constitution requires an election to be completed on the same day nationwide.


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