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Democrats ask to have Pheu Thai dissolved

The Democrat Party yesterday lodged a complaint with the Constitutional Court against Pheu Thai Party, calling for dissolution of the ruling party for pushing the February 2 election to be held despite an Election Commission recommendation to delay the poll.

Party spokesman Chavanond Intarakomalyasut said caretaker premier and Pheu Thai party-list MP Yingluck Shinawatra had ignored the election agency's key recommendation, an act regarded as a violation of an important charter article.

It has requested dissolution of the Pheu Thai Party because executive authority was utilised, via government acts such as the declaring of a state of emergency, which afforded it control of political expression over others in the run-up to the poll.

Article 68 of the Constitution stipulates one's right to protect the Constitution. It also prohibits any act that would seek change or to obtain authority through unconstitutional means. The article also permits dissolution of political parties found to have done this, and can ban party executives from participation in political activities for five years.

However, Pheu Thai party-list MP Ruangkrai Leekitwattana said duty and decisions in regard to arranging or postponing elections did not belong to a government, and that neither Yingluck nor the caretaker government utilised executive authority to gain advantage over other parties.

The Democrat Party would also seek to impeach Yingluck and all members of her Cabinet for their "misconduct" and roles in arranging the February 2 poll, Chavanond said. This would be done through the National Anti-Corruption Commission, via a signature campaign seeking support from a minimum of 20,000 people.

He dismissed a Pheu Thai statement that the Democrats had no right to void the February 2 election results because it failed to field candidates.

Meanwhile, EC chairman Supachai Somcharoen said a new election would be arranged if rulings by the Constitutional Court or the Ombudsman's Office found that results of the February 2 poll were invalid. And a new royal decree may need to be issued by the caretaker government to fix problems in 28 constituencies in the South, as no candidates had registered for these seats.

Pheu Thai spokesman Prompong Nopparit said a complaint will be loged today with the EC to seek the dissolution of the Democrat Party, for former MPs' roles assisting in protest rallies, in violation of Article 68.


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