PM urges justice as ombudsman seeks court ruling on Feb 2 poll constitutionality


BANGKOK, March 7 – Caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra today urged independent agencies to ensure fairness and justice following the decision of the ombudsmen to accept a petition seeking a Constitution Court ruling on the constitutionality of the Feb 2 general election.

The Office of the Ombudsman today announced that it has authority to accept the petition of Kittipong Kamolthammavongse, a Thammasat University lecturer, alleging that the Feb 2 election was unconstitutional as it was not organised on a single day nationwide as stated in the supreme law and that it resulted in unfair treatment to candidates.

Ombudsman office spokesman Raksakecha Chaechai said the agency has the authority to examine the work of the EC commissioners. As the Feb 2 election process was allegedly not fair and clean, the agency resolved unanimously to forward the petition to the Constitution Court to rule on the validity of the Feb 2 election and call for a new election.

Voting held under a state of emergency and elections in 28 southern constituencies where there were no contestants were also issues.

Meanwhile, Ms Yingluck said it depends on the decision of the Constitution Court, but she reasserted that the government has cooperated fully with the poll agency to hold the election, without any criticism on the process.

Saying that there are movements attempting to topple her government through the mechanism of independent organisations, the caretaker premier urged all agencies to work in a fair and straightforward manner so that the country could move forward.

Regarding the business sector’s call for the government to lift the state of emergency, Ms Yingluck said the Center for Maintaining Peace and Order (CMPO) and the security agencies will consider it. She urged the demonstrators not to prolong the protests as it affects the country’s economy and investor confidence, particularly obstruction of elections which disrupt the formation of a new government.