Smaller parties cry foul, call for double ballot

Electoral reforms


SLMC leader and Minister Rauff Hakeem addressing the media following consultations among minor and minority political parties at Waters Edge, Battaramulla. Minister Palani (r) and Mano Ganesh flank the SLMC chief.

Eighteen minority and minor parties discussed the proposed electoral reforms on Thursday (11) evening at an urgent meeting at Waters Edge, Battaramulla.

Ministers Rauff Hakeem, P. Digambaram, State Minister M.T. Hassen Ali, Parliamentarians M. Sumanthiran, Selvam Adaikalanathan, M. Chandrakumar, R.Yogarajan, Western Provincial Councillor Mano Ganeshan, J. Sirithunga, Sarath Athukorala, Y.L.S. Hameed, Kumar Guruparan and Ananda Manawadu were among the participants. They issued the following media statement:

"The proposed electoral reforms suggest identification of candidates to each polling division and once the winners are decided, based on who has won a polling division, the same vote will decide the proportion for the proportional representation system as well.

This system has a serious flaw in that the candidates are linked to a polling division there is a tendency amongst voters in a polling division to vote for a possible winner rather than any other party of their choice. Thus the two strongest parties will benefit in proportion to their voter strength in the constituency.

When this vote is applied to decide the numbers of members of parliament, under both district and national proportional representation, the other parties will suffer a second time. This is the reason why in any part of the world where similar system of election is in force a double ballot is given so that at least in the choice of candidates of the parties who belong to parties other than the main parties can secure their legitimate representation. In the absence of double ballot system, it will wholly distort the electoral process and the resultant position is that the parliament will not reflect the preference of the voter.

Due to this fundamental flaw in the proposed system, we the undersigned political parties oppose same and call for the acceptance of the double ballot proposal before considering the other features of the proposal. The suggested number of seats is also a grave matter of concern to us."


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