59,000 persons get temporary IDs in NWP, CP
More to be issued today
Temporary identity cards have been issued for 59,000 persons in North Western and Central provinces enabling them to cast their votes in the forthcoming polls for the two provincial councils on February 14.
Assistant Returning officers in the two provinces said that the final date for applications for the temporary identity cards was on the 6th. More identity cards would be issued today.
A breakdown of distribution is: 11,000 in Nuwara Eliya District, 16,000 in Kandy District, 5000 in Matale District of the North Western Province had been issued with the temporary identity cards. In the Central province, 20000 in Kurunegala District and another 6300 in Puttalam district had been given temporary identity cards, district returning officers said.
The Campaign for Free and Fair Elections said that there were 71,250 persons in the Nuwara Eliya District without identity cards and a large number of voters would not be eligible to cast their votes since they are yet to receive the identity cards. Media spokesman of the CaFFE, Keerthi Tennakoon said that the closing date for applications for temporary identity cards was on February 6th and by that time the Nuwara Eliya District Secretariat had received only less than 400 applications. A large number of applications submitted to Divisional Secretariats in the district were lying idle and this caused doubt whether the applicants would receive their identity cards on time for the election. "Around 50,000 persons in the district would definitely be deprived of their right of voting," Tennakoon said.
He said that a new project will have to be commenced to issue temporary identity cards by divisional secretariats immediately