Pyongyang, Wednesday: North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il has criticised the FIA for its “undemocratic” procedures ahead of this week’s presidential elections, in which former Ferrari team principal Jean Todt will face ex-rally driver and MEP Ari Vatanen in a bid to succeed the outgoing Max Mosley.

Critic: North Korean leader Kim Jong-il
Critic: North Korean leader Kim Jong-il

Amid a complaint by Vatanen to the French justice system over the impartiality of the election, and the revelation that several senior FIA officials have been utilising the organisation’s time and money to campaign for Todt, Mr. Kim has informed the North Korean press that he “abhors” the lack of democracy and transparency exhibited by the world’s motorsport governing body.

“This is a disgraceful and abhorrent subversion of democracy,” the leader, who is technically not the president of the country – that title belongs to his father Kim Il-sung, even though he died in 1994 – told reporters today. “Corruption, voter intimidation, perhaps even ballot-box stuffing; all of this done on a scale even I wouldn’t contemplate. I am very disappointed in the FIA today.”

North Korea is ranked by the United Nations as the world’s least democratic country, but political scientists have already pointed out that the Stalinist state actually compares favourably to the FIA.

“I mean, North Korea don’t even pretend to adhere to things like the rule of law or the fairness and impartiality of the democratic procedure,” one commentator pointed out. “The FIA are trying, and failing, to pull the wool over everyone’s eyes.”

North Korea is not represented at the FIA, but Mr. Kim pledged his support to Ari Vatanen anyway, in the hope that somebody was listening.