The D.C. Board of Elections and Ethics decided yesterday that it will not appeal a U.S. District Court ruling that would let Marion Barry Jr. keep his City Council seat while running for mayor.

"The board will follow the court's decision in order not to prolong uncertainties associated with continued litigation," it said in a statement distributed after its weekly meeting.

Not appealing the decision will allow "the orderly processes of determining the field of candidates" qualified to run in the Sept. 12 primary elections, the statement continued.

The board responded to a decision last Friday by Judge Gerhard E. Gesell, who struck down a section of the District's election law that requires some elected officials to resign their offices before they can run for another.

Barry, one of several announced candidates for mayor, would have been affected by that law. He filed a lawsuit challenging it.

The board of elections' action is not final.Corporation Counsel John R. Risher Jr., the District of Columbia's chief legal officer, who entered the case on his own, said he had not decided whether to appeal, but is leaning against it.

Barry could not be reached for comment.