21 July 2024

A number of suspected vote buyers have been held for questioning by Special Branch police in the north-eastern province of Si Sa Ket, ahead of provincial-level voting for senators today.

According to the police report, the suspects made hotel bookings for a group of senatorial candidates, allegedly to instruct them on how they should vote for specific candidates to advance them to the next round.

The report said that these candidates, who are proxies and have no intention of being elected, were promised between 5,000 and 7,000 baht, plus the 2,500 baht application fee, if they vote as instructed.

Si Sa Ket has 2,674 registered candidates, the most in any province. 856 advanced to the provincial-level vote today.

Meanwhile in Khon Kaen province, seven candidates were found not to have cast votes for themselves in the first round this morning, although they were each given two ballots and were allowed to vote for themselves.

A complaint was lodged with election officials by candidates who failed to pass the morning vote, seeking an investigation into this conduct, on the suspicion that they might be proxies.

Some candidates reached the second round because there were fewer than five candidates in their background groups. In some background groups, there was just one candidate.