Friday, January 11, 2008

83 poll winners face inquiries

83 poll winners face inquiries

The Election Commission (EC) yesterday set aside 83 winners from the December 23 general election for investigations into possible electoral violations - 65 of them from the People Power Party (PPP).

Published on January 4, 2008

The agency endorsed 397 out of the 480 poll winners, including all elected political party leaders, according to EC chairman Apichart Sukhagganond, who chaired yesterday's meeting of the five election commissioners.

Of the 83 disputed results, four involved party-list candidates from two parties, People Power and the Democrats.

The four are all accused of vote buying.

People Power saw the election of three party-list candidates put on hold. The three are Yongyuth Tiyapairat for Zone 1 from the upper North, plus Chavalit Wichayasut and Thanathep Timsuwan, both for Zone 3, covering the Northeast.

Democrat Paitoon Kaewthong is under investigation in Zone 2, which covers the lower North.

In the constituency results, the EC refused to endorse 79 winners. Sixty-two of those MPs-elect are from the PPP, while six are from Puea Pandin, five from the Democrats, four from Chart Thai, and one each from Ruam Jai Thai Chart Pattana and Matchima Thipataya.

Most of the election winners who failed to get EC endorsement are from the North and Northeast.

Apichart, the EC chief, said the commissioners made their decisions about the endorsement in a straightforward manner, regardless of the parties the poll winners are from.

Meanwhile, Democrat MPs-elect Thaworn Senneam and Jua Ratchasi petitioned the EC yesterday to reject endorsement for about 30 MPs-elect from People Power, who they claim distributed video CDs featuring ex-PM Thaksin Shinawatra speaking in support of the pro-Thaksin party.

The petition said the EC should postpone endorsing the 30 MPs-elect even though the move would lead to a delay in the new House of Representatives being convened.

Attayuth Butrsripoom

The Nation

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