INFORM Executive Director Udaya Kalupathirana, FMM Convenor Seetha Ranjani, CPA Executive Director Pakiyasothi Saravanamuththu
Text and pix by P.D. De Silva
Centre for Policy Alternatives Executive Director Pakiyasothi Saravanamuththu warned District Coordinators of the Centre For Monitoring Election Violence (CMEV) that monitoring the next election or referendum would be a challenge as the Government would do everything possible to reaffirm their 2/3 mandate.
CMEV’s District Coordinators gathered at the Galle Face Hotel last Sunday (27) to share their experiences at the last Presidential and Parliamentary elections and prepare for a possible referendum and the long due Provincial Council Election.
National Coordinator of the Centre for Monitoring Election Violence Manjula Gajanayaka said that the CMEV had kept tabs on the manner in which their monitors performed at the last Presidential and Parliamentary elections and had taken steps to wean out those who acted in contravention to the Centre’s policies and guidelines or had been aligned to a political party. He said that such elements had not been invited for the discussion. “It’s imperative that Election Monitors have the support of the public,” he stressed.
Free Media Movement Convenor Seetha Ranjani recalled her experience of monitoring elections in difficult times when armed groups were scaring off voters. “Election Monitors were not provided with accreditation and were at risk at all times,” she added.
A number of CMEV’s monitors aired their views and assured the Centre of their continued support.
Senior Researcher at CMEV presenting the research on campaign finance said that what mattered more than how much was spent was who provided the funds and what they received in return.
CMEV’s District Coordinators