PDRC Chumphon: Send ballots back

Anti-government protesters in Chumphon have demanded the provincial election committee send back general election ballot papers received from Bangkok.

A group of protesters led by Krit Kaewrak, president of Tha Kham Tambon Administration Organisation and chairman of PDRC Chumphon, surrounded the entrance of the post office in Muang district late Tuesday morning after learning that it was the distribution point for election ballot papers for five provinces - Chumphon, Ranong, Surat Thani, Phangnga and Phuket.

Mr Krit said the majority of people in Chumphon do not support the holding of an election before national reform, so the PDRC does not want the ballots to be delivered.

The protesters had learned that all ballot papers for advance voting were now at the police station, so they would work with the police chief and the Chumphon election committee to ensure the ballot papers are returned to Bangkok, he said.

Local post office chief Sombat Nuphak met with protesters and told them that the ballot papers for advance voting, set for Jan 26, had already been delivered to the provincial election committees. He said his office now had only the ballot sheets for the Feb 2 election, which were awaiting collection.

Mr Sombat said that after the PDRC protest on Tuesday he would have to inform the provincial election committee in each province of the situation and wait for their instructions on how to proceed. If no one comes to collect the ballot papers the provincial post office will have to store them, he said. 

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