Polls extravaganza leads to increase election related violence - CaFFE


By Dasun Edirisinghe

Money spent on election campaigns was highest in the Western and Southern Provinces according to the records of previous elections, a local election monitoring organisation said yesterday.

Head of the Campaign for Free and Fair Elections (CaFFE) Keerthi Tennakoon told The Island that polls extravaganza often led to increased election related violence.

"According to our records, average campaign expenditure is highest in the Western Province followed by Southern Province while North Western Province is placed third," he said.

Tennakoon said that huge expenditure meant high competition among candidates even in the same party, which led to violence.

CaFFE would commence monitoring operations for the forthcoming Western and Southern Provincial Council polls from tomorrow (16), Tennakoon said.

"We will convey public complaints regarding election law violations or violence to the Elections Commissioner as in previous elections and get immediate response," Tennakoon said, adding that this time, too, they expected to play a major monitoring role with provincial representatives and their coordinating offices in two provinces.

Tennakoon added that CaFFE would observe pre election, election day and post election periods and would monitor election related violence, misuse of public property, illegal propaganda and mediate to ensure the voting rights of the people.

CaFFE’s main coordinating centre would be established at 100/19 A, Welikadawatte Road, Rajagiriya and could be reached through 0114341514, 0114341524 or 0112866224 (Fax) and caffe2008@gmail.com, Tennakoon said.

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