GE 2020 voting exceeds 70 percent | Daily News


 

GE 2020 voting exceeds 70 percent

Counting starts today
Final results on Friday
No major incidents
 [Left] President Gotabaya Rajapaksa cast his vote for the Parliamentary Election 2020 at Sri Vivekaramaya Temple in Pangiriwatta, Nugegoda. First Lady Ayoma Rajapaksa also cast her vote. [Right] Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna leader and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa casting his vote at the Mademulana D.A.Rajapaksa Maha Vidyalaya yesterday.

 [Left] President Gotabaya Rajapaksa cast his vote for the Parliamentary Election 2020 at Sri Vivekaramaya Temple in Pangiriwatta, Nugegoda. First Lady Ayoma Rajapaksa also cast her vote. [Right] Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna leader and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa casting his vote at the Mademulana D.A.Rajapaksa Maha Vidyalaya yesterday.

The General Election 2020 was successfully concluded yesterday (05) at 5.00 in the evening with a voter turnout that exceeded 70% islandwide, Election Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya said.

Counting will begin today from 7.00 a.m. in a departure from the usual practice of overnight counting.

The poll held at 12, 985 polling centres across the country saw strict adherence to all health regulations which were implemented due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The overall vote was peaceful apart from a few minor incidents. A special security plan was carried out by the police when transporting ballot boxes where each ballot box was protected by a police officer in charge.

The voter turnout as at 5.00 p.m. was recorded as: Colombo district 67%, Kandy 67%, Galle 68% , Nuwara Eliya 70% , Kurunegala 60%, Jaffna 57%, Ampara 72.8% , Kilinochchi 71.52%, Mannar 79.49% , Vavuniya 74% , Mullaitivu 76.25%, Trincomalee 73.5% and Batticaloa 76.15%. Similar numbers were reported from the other electoral districts.

At a press briefing held at the Election Commission yesterday (05) evening, Chairman of the Election Commission Mahinda Deshapriya said there was a peaceful environment during the poll apart from a few minor incidents. Speaking to the media Deshapriya said, “I believe for the first time in our election history we were able to finish the meeting of the committee on election disputes in a brief time period.

We commenced the meeting at 5.30 p.m. and concluded it by 5.50 p.m. No case serious enough to annul the election has taken place. All the members of the committee were in agreement that the election was held peacefully and without major incidents. However, we will be receiving reports from all our returning officers on election violations until Thursday morning. There was only one major incident reported during the poll, however, the incident does not relate to the poll. There were several incidents in Kelaniya and Kilinochchi and the police are probing those.”

The Chairman of the Election Commission also stated that he is satisfied with the way in which health regulations were implemented at the polling centres. He extended his gratitude towards the Health Ministry for issuing strict guidelines to follow during the election. Deshapriya also extended his gratitude to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa and all other political leaders for adhering to health guidelines during the election period. Deshapriya also extended his gratitude to the Tri Forces, Police and public servants for their commitment in successfully holding the election.

EC Chairman Deshapriya pointed out that persons who are presently in quarantine centres were not able to vote in the General Election 2020 due to legal limitations. “We need to have election laws amended to face emergency situations such as these. Our election laws should be amended to allow advance voting. There are many people who cannot reach polling stations such as persons in prison for minor wrongdoings, journalists, workers at Customs, Ports, refugees and those who are sick and bedridden. We have proposed laws that allow persons to either vote prior to the poll or vote at a different polling centre. We need to pass these proposals in Parliament.”

The EC Chairman said the first election result could be expected late in the afternoon today (06). The announcement of the results could be completed by tomorrow (07), he added.

 

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