Thai poll 'winners' face probe

More than 80 mostly pro-Thaksin candidates being investigated for fraud.

    Samak Sundaravej, head of the pro-Thaksin PPP, has claimed victory in the December 23 vote [AFP]
    Six were from the anti-Thaksin Democrat party and the rest from four other parties.
     
    The PPP won 233 of 480 seats in the election, just seven short of an outright majority.
     
    Ealier this week the PPP said it had teamed up with three small parties to form a coalition government holding between them 254 seats in parliament.
     
    Deadline
     
    Parliament must meet to elect a prime minister by January 22 - 30 days after the elections - but cannot do so until the Election Commission has certified 95 per cent of the results.
     

    The PPP says it has teamed up with three
    parties to form a coalition government [AFP]

    The Election Commission had been expected to certify the election results on Thursday.
     
    Prapan Naikowit, a commission member, said all candidates should be given the all-clear by January 21, with by-elections in troubled seats scheduled for January 13 and 19.
     
    But the PPP and some analysts say the generals who evicted Thaksin are pressing the commission to disqualify so many PPP candidates it will be impossible for the party to form a coalition.
     
    So far, three PPP candidates have been disqualified and a re-run has been ordered in three constituencies.
     
    The party faces another hurdle as the Supreme Court agreed on Thursday to hear a petition by the Democrat party to nullify the elections.
     
    The Democrats, which came second in the race with 165 seats, accused the PPP of breaking election laws and the Election Commission of illegally holding advance voting a week before the polls.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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