President mulls invalidation of postponed LG election nominations

Wednesday, 15 May 2024 00:20 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

  • Cabinet Co-Spokesman and Minister Bandula Gunawardena says Govt. sought legal advice from AG regarding the matter
  • Asserts State sector employees who submitted nominations for LG polls faced difficulties at work places due to their political perspectives
  • Says President directs to hold discussions with AG, party leaders and Election Commission to plan for LG polls next year under previous system which will enable higher participation of women 

By Charumini de Silva

President Ranil Wickremesinghe
PM Dinesh Gunawardena

Cabinet Co-Spokesman and Minister Bandula Gunawardena yesterday confirmed that President Ranil Wickremesinghe has directed Premier Dinesh Gunawardena to explore the possibility of quashing the nominations for the postponed 2023 Local Government elections. 

He said that the matter was taken into consideration under ‘other category’ at the weekly Cabinet meeting held on Monday.

Gunawardena revealed that the Government has sought legal advice from the Attorney General regarding the matter, shedding light on discussions held during the Cabinet Meeting on Monday. 

“There were concerns raised by State sector employees who had submitted nominations. Given their political perspectives, these Government workers have faced various types of difficulties at their respective work places. Thus, it prompted the consideration of invalidating the nominations,” he explained responding to questions from journalists at the post-Cabinet meeting media briefing about the timing of the LG polls vis-à-vis the Presidential election. The Cabinet Co-Spokesman refuted reports suggesting an imminent LG poll before the Presidential election.  He clarified that the President›s directive also includes holding discussions with the Attorney General, party leaders and the Election Commission to plan for the Local Government polls next year under the previous system which will enable a higher participation of women as well. 

“Presidential election will proceed as scheduled this year, supported by allocated funds from the 2024 Budget,” he said, hinting at Provincial Council elections expected in 2025.