The Election Commission (EC) says it will have to endorse the MP status of Move Forward Party leader Pita Limjaroenrat before it can consider whether to strip him of it over his alleged share-holding offence.
EC secretary-general Sawaeng Boonmee said the petitions against Mr Pita were lodged after the qualifications of election candidates were examined, so the EC could not forward them to the Supreme Court before Election Day on May 14.
He said the EC will have to endorse Mr Pita as a list-MP as part of the election process and then consider if he is qualified to hold the post.
However, he said the EC can investigate a criminal offence against Mr Pita, saying it can consider if he has violated Section 151 by applying as a list-MP candidate despite knowing he may not have been eligible to run for the House seat.
"It's the Office of the EC's job to gather information and submit it to the EC to decide if he has violated Section 151 by applying to contest despite having been fully aware he probably wasn't eligible to.
"The EC can't consider Mr Pita's status as an MP because he isn't an MP yet. If he is endorsed and the EC has questions about his qualifications, it can ask the Constitutional Court to rule," Mr Sawaeng said.
His clarification came after EC chairman Ittiporn Boonpracong said on Wednesday that the poll agency was considering whether to accept the complaint against Mr Pita over his alleged shareholding in a media company.
Political activist Ruang-krai Leekitwattana petitioned the poll agency on May 10, four days before election day, to investigate Mr Pita over 42,000 shares he held in iTV, an independent broadcaster founded in the 1990s.
Under the current constitution, an election candidate is barred from running for office if they own shares in a media company.
Mr Sawaeng also said people can observe a recount of votes received by MPs-elect at 47 polling stations across 16 provinces tomorrow, and the recount will be recorded as evidence.
The recount was ordered after the EC found that the total number of ballots cast for the candidates did not match the number of people who turned out to vote.
He said the recount would not affect the election results in the constituency system, but it will force a recalculation of party-list votes.