EC raises concerns with foreign observers

The Election Commission (EC) has raised concerns with foreign election observers on a number of issues.

Foreign observers have begun to arrive in Sri Lanka and have already met some political party representatives and the EC. Election observers from the Commonwealth, European Union (EU), and other international organisations have been invited to monitor the election.

Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) Chairman Prof. G.L. Peiris said that Commonwealth observers met him and SLPP Leader Mahinda Rajapaksa last week.

He said that at the meeting, the SLPP raised concerns over the misuse of state property by the United National Front (UNF).

The SLPP had also met the Elections Commission (EC) yesterday (19) and raised concerns over state resources, including vehicles being used by the UNF for election campaign work.

Meanwhile, Election Commission member Ratnajeevan Hoole said that he had met with preliminary team of observers from the Commonwealth and EU. During the discussion he had expressed certain concerns regarding greater security.

“Muslims I met in some areas in the North and East indicated to me that they would not step out to vote if there were disturbances. Thus the need for greater security in view of the incidents in April.”

Additionally, election observer groups from South Asian countries, including India, the Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, and Bangladesh, would also be arriving. Furthermore, observers from the Philippines and Cambodia too will be on the ground.