Thailand’s Constitutional Court has declined to consider a petition by the opposition to annul the February 2 vote citing insufficient grounds. Wiratana Kalayasiri, opposition Democrat Party lawyer, had argued that the poll violated the constitution for several reasons, including that it was not completed in one day. The government blamed the delay on the opposition blocking polling stations. Thailand has been in a political crisis since mass anti-government protests kicked off in November. They were sparked by a controversial amnesty bill which critics said would allow former leader Thaksin Shinawatra to return to Thailand without serving time in jail for his corruption conviction. The opposition’s legal challenge was based on the failure to hold the entire election on the same day. “This case is over,” said Kalayasiri. “But if the government does anything wrong again, we will make another complaint.”
The general elections had been called by Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra in an attempt to end three months of street protests by demonstrators calling for her resignation.
The Democrat opposition party boycotted the polls in a show of solidarity with the protesters, led by former Democrat members of parliament.
More than 10 percent of the polling stations were closed down on February 2 as anti-government protesters blocked election officials from bringing ballots to the stations and stopped people from casting their ballots. There were no candidates in about 28 constituencies as demonstrators blocked the registration process.