Gota set a bad precedent by addressing UPFA political rally —PAFFREL

By Franklin R. Satyapalan

Executive Director of local election monitor, PAFFREL, Rohana Hettiarachchi said yesterday that the Secretary Defense and the Urban Development Authority (UDA) Gotabaya Rajapaksa had set a bad precedent to all state officials by addressing the inaugural propaganda meeting of the UPFA group leader for Colombo last week .

The Defense Secretary may be the brother of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, but he should have set a good example on how senior government officials should behave. Instead, he has set a bad example to other government officials, he said.

Hettiarachchi said that he had taken up this matter with Commissioner of Elections Mahinda Deshapriya on Friday and requested him to ensure that such incidents are not repeated.

Meanwhile the Deputy Commissioner of Elections (Administration) M. M. Mohammad said that the deadline for candidates to forward their photographs for official candidate identity cards is Tuesday (18).

All candidates from the mainstream political should forward two color or black and white photographs (1x1/1/4) and a photocopy of their NIC. The two photographs should be placed in an envelope along with the NIC copy and their name written on top and forwarded through an authorized agent or independent group leader to the respective Assistant or Deputy Elections Commissioner of the respective district without delay, he explained.

He said another matter that was brought to the notice of the Commissioner of Elections was the continuing abuse of government vehicles and postal facilities for political propaganda campaigns .

Furthermore Divi Naguma and other development programs are being implemented in the Southern province, especially in the Galle district with the participation of Grama Niladaris and candidates , he said.

One cannot stop President Rajapaksa from inaugurating development projects even though in the areas where the elections are being held as they are national projects,

He said the government had informed the Commissioner of Elections that, as a good efficient OIC was required for the Wellampitiya police station, the incumbent was being transferred to be replaced with the Minuwangoda OIC.

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