Charter Court rejects EC’s request for ruling on party-list seat calculation

The Constitutional Court has rejected the Election Commission’s request for it to rule on the formula to be used to calculate the allocation of 150 party-least seats among parties contesting the March 24th general election.

By a vote of 7 to 2, the Constitutional Court ruled today that the EC has the duty and authority to calculate the party-list seats in accordance with Article 81 of the Constitution and Article 128 of the MP Election Act.

However, the court said it appeared that the EC had not fulfilled its duty as mandated by the Constitution and the MP Election Act and, hence, there was no justification for the EC to bring the matter to the attention of the court.

According to the formula widely understood before the election, any party which received about 70,000 votes will be allocated one party-list seat and any party which won more constituency seats than the number of party-list seats is not supposed to get any party-list seats.  The Pheu Thai party is the only party which falls into the latter category.

Additionally, there are several smaller parties which did not win a constituency seat and received fewer than about 70,000 votes.  However, under the principle of “every vote counts”, as laid down by the framers of the Constitution and the Election Act, smaller parties in this category would be allocated at least one party-list seat.

It was the calculation of these party-list seats for the smaller parties which caused the confusion and problem between the larger and smaller parties.  The EC itself could not decide by itself and referred the matter to the Constitutional Court for consideration.


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