SLPP requests EC to block Govt. opening projects

Saturday, 2 November 2019 00:01 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

  • Hails EC for upholding election laws 
  • But says plans afoot by Govt. to hurriedly declare open projects 
  • Claim contractors have been told to fast track construction 
  • Insists expedited projects run the risk of being low quality 

By Nuwan Senarathna 

The Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) yesterday commended the Election Commission (EC) for taking action against election violations and creating an environment where a free and fair presidential poll could be held and requested that the Commission prevent the Government from holding opening ceremonies of development projects before 16 November. 

Speaking to media at SLPP head office, MP Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena said the EC had acted impartially to prevent election violations that could have influenced people ahead of presidential elections.

“We commend the EC for taking immediate action to address election violations. This is a very positive sign that this election will be fair. EC members are acting bravely to prevent the Government from influencing the public ahead of the election,” he said.

Abeywardena said the EC had prevented Education Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam from declaring open a new school building ahead of the election. According to Abeywardena, the EC decision to prevent Education Minister Kariyawasam from opening a school’s new building had proven its impartiality.

“The EC officials have taken action against issuing Samurdhi cards. Top officials were caught red-handed. EC members did not hesitate to take action against those who were involved in issuing Samurdhi cards, which is a very commendable action.”

Abeywardena requested the EC to prevent the Government from declaring open partially completed development projects. He charged the Government had been forcing State officials and private contractors to fast-track projects so their opening ceremonies could be held before the Presidential Election. 

“The Government is planning to expedite all opening ceremonies of most of the development projects before the election. But that poses a great threat to the quality of development projects. When contractors are pushed to expedite projects that may hinder the quality.”

Abeywardena claimed several parties were also attempting to push contractors to complete projects to get a commission through the payment that would be made to them. He noted if SLPP presidential candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa is elected, he would take legal action against such contractors that expedite their projects resulting in lower quality.  Pic by Chamila Karunarathne