BANGKOK- Thailand’s opposition on Wednesday lost a legal bid to nullify a controversial election disrupted by anti-government protests, in a boost to Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s crisis-hit administration.
The kingdom’s Constitutional Court declined to consider the petition by the Democrat Party to annul the February 2 vote and disband Yingluck’s party, saying there were insufficient grounds.
Yingluck called the polls in an attempt to assuage opposition protesters who have staged more than three months of mass street protests seeking her resignation.
The Democrats boycotted the vote, saying it would not end a political crisis stretching back to a military coup in 2006 that ousted Yingluck’s elder brother Thaksin Shinawatra as premier.
The protesters want Yingluck to stand down to make way for an unelected “People’s Council” to enact reforms to tackle corruption and alleged vote buying before new polls are held.
Demonstrators prevented 10,000 polling stations from opening in this month’s vote, affecting several million people, mainly in opposition strongholds in Bangkok and the south.
The Democrats had argued that the failure to hold the entire election on the same day was an attempt to grab power unconstitutionally — a complaint rejected by the court.