Democrat candidate wins Yala by-election

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YALA, Aug 1 – Democrat Party candidate Abdulkarim Denggarina won yesterday’s Yala Constituency 2 By-election with 530 votes over Sugarno Mata of Pheu Thai Party, according to Yala provincial election commission chief Boonyasit Suwannarat.

The Election Commission ordered a ballot recount in Yala Constituency 2 after the Pheu Thai candidate who earlier lost to the Democrat candidate by 48 votes lodged a complaint about alleged irregularities concerning wrong tallies, extra ballots being provided to eligible voters and vote counting at polling stations not matching the voter turnout.

In the election re-run, the Democrat candidate substantially widened the margin when compared to his performance in the first election.

Announcing the result of Sunday’s by-election, Mr Boonyasit said Mr Abdulkarim won with 28,495 votes or 530 votes over his main rival from the Pheu Thai party, with 27,965 votes. There were a total of 10,043 spoiled ballots.

The Pheu Thai party won 265 seats in the July 3 general election, while the ruling Democrat party of Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva took only 159 seats.

Last week, the Election Commission endorsed dozens of winning candidates, bringing the total number of MPs certified to 496 of the overall complement of 500 MPs, which paved the way for the first house sitting Monday.