Guardian Council checking complaints by defeated Raeisi

Financial Tribune- The spokesman of the Guardian Council says it will respond to appeals filed by presidential contenders against irregularities and offences before and during the Friday vote.

“We have received several reports and complaints over the election process, which our experts are looking into. The council has until next Tuesday to respond,” Abassali Kadkhodaei told IRNA on Monday.

The council is in charge of monitoring elections and validating their results, while the Interior Ministry is the poll organizer.

According to the ministry, Friday’s vote saw a solid 73% turnout, as  41 million people from among the 56-million-strong electorate came out to vote.

The final results on Sunday showed that over 23 million ballots were cast for the incumbent Hassan Rouhani who was reelected on a platform of political moderation and economic upliftment.

His main challenger, principlist Ebrahim Raeisi who has a long experience in top judicial posts, came a distant second with 15.7 million votes or 38% of the total ballots cast. Raeisi sent a letter to Chairman of Guardians Council Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati on Sunday asking for “infractions” before and during the May 19 vote be investigated by the powerful oversight body.

Enclosed in the three-page letter were “hundreds of pages of evidence” supporting the claim.

Bitter Moments

The letter, congratulating the nation for their “glorious presence” on polling day, claimed that alleged “misconduct and flagrant violations” created “bitter moments”.

“Considering promises I have given to the heroic and noble people of Iran, I cannot remain silent about violations of their rights,” Raeisi wrote.

Before the voting ended Friday midnight, his campaign team had complained of “widespread electoral violations” and called for  intervention by authorities.

Campaign chief Ali Nikzad talked of “propaganda by certain officials and supporters of the government” in favor of Rouhani.

According to the election law, candidates and their supporters must stop campaigning 24 hours before the polls open.

Another campaign staff claimed that not enough ballot papers had been distributed in areas presumably in favor Raeisi.

The presidential poll was held concurrent with the nation-wide city council elections.