29 September, 2020

Blog

Election Bribes Galore

Following an end to political propaganda on Friday mid night, candidates contesting Monday’s parliamentary poll now seem to have directed their energies towards disbursing bribes to voters in the form of “money”, “liquor” “FMCG Goods” and even “sil redi”.

Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya

Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya

Election monitors in a joint press briefing in Colombo today said that following the ban on polls propaganda some candidates have begun offering bribes to voters in return for their votes.

Since polls propaganda deadline on Friday midnight, candidates have now begun visiting temples while exhibiting party symbols and preferance numbers, in the guise of participating in religious ceremonies.

According to CaFFE candidates using temples to continue their propaganda has been reported from Gampaha Kurunegala,Vavuniya, Galle and Colombo districts with UNP and the UPFA being the main culprits.

Also liquor seems to be freely available to voters mainly in the upcountry plantation sector. According to polls monitors liquor distribution in a big way has been reported from Kurunegala, Puttalam, Badulla, Nuwaraeliya, Matale and Kandy districts.

Meanwhile in the Anuradhapura area a UNP politician has been accused of inaugurating some village road construction work on Saturday, blatantly violating polls laws.

Although the polls has been largely peaceful compared to elections in the recent past, monitors are disturbed by the fact that four deaths had occurred during the pre-polls period.

As tensions and polls violations has risen in the last two days authorities have taken steps to send the elite Special Task Force (STF) of Police to maintain law and order on the election day in nine districts.

Meanwhile Rohana Hettiarchchi of PAFFREL says that monitors had recorded several incidents of money being distributed among voters in return for their vote. A UPFA candidate in Colombo had been engaged in distributing money in some areas of the Kaduwela electorate on Saturday.

The 2015 general election will also see the largest deployment of election monitors. There will be 31,000 plus locals and 130 international election observers on duty tomorrow (Monday).

Today’s media briefing was attended by leaders of Transparency International, CMEV, CaFFE, NPOC, and MFFE.

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Latest comments

  • 18
    1

    Bribing voters has been a big particle by politicians especially UPFA under MR and these habits don’t disappear so easily.

    • 1
      1

      Really, Bribing and Intimidation started with Mahinda ?.

      Suggest you read Jane Russel
      Communal Politics under the Donougmore Constitution 1931-1947
      http://www.noolaham.net/project/37/3675/3675.pdf

      e.g. Page 73
      It is no use for an M.S.C. to run about without money, whether in ones own constituency or out of it. Constituents will scarcely understand it if the Member has no money on him.

      Ardent temperance workers are often forced to distribute gallons of arrack among their electors in order to gain seats of honour in the legislature.

      Page 88
      Most people sell their votes, and a large number gives them to friends and relations, men of their own caste and community and every other consideration but the good of the country.

    • 0
      0

      Page 90
      A candidate has to organise bullies and criminals for fighting these elections. In Dedigama electorate for example in the 1936 election large number of bathgama and wahumpura castes were permanently alienated from the Senanayakes because of intimidation by the supporters of Dudley Senanayake. In the North intimidation of the non-vellala castes by vellala was considered perfectly acceptable.

  • 18
    0

    Dear Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya,

    You are doing a great job. Thank you. All the People of Sri Lanka thank you, except for Mahinda Rajapapaksa Shill and Cronies who are used to doing things differently.

    We all need to fix this steadily.

    Say thanks to your Poster removal gang as well, along with all those work for you in the Election Department.

  • 3
    13

    Why hasn’t RW had the UNP offenders hauled up before him and given them a dressing down? Is this the good governance we are to expect?

    • 2
      6

      Six disapprovals. So this IS the good governance we are to expect. I predict that Ranil will win but will be in trouble within a year. He will follow MR and appoint all his buddies irrespective of their honesty and ability. He can’t imprison MR or send him abroad for trial without an insurrection. God only knows what will happen after that.

      • 6
        0

        Your lover boy created and propagated these practices and is still doing it. Please shut up and get lost.

  • 11
    0

    It has been reported that silredi was distributed in temples in Kurunegalle even in the is column. Rev. Sobitha had reported this to EC. According to the election commissioner this is illegal and he has openly said that those who did this will go to prison. Now, why he is not taking action against these fellows. Or is there a procedure to be followed, But whether UNP wins or not, I hope he will take action against theVIP in Kurunegalla,

  • 3
    0

    “Saying” and “Doing” are completely different and opposite scenarios in Sri Lanka. All the Politicians “say” thing to us, but have they or do they DO what they SAY. Even this Election Commissioner say these politicians who violate laws would be punished, I do not believe it. Just think of a simple matter. When the FCID wanted to summon and question some of those who are contesting in this election,against whom allegations have been filed and investigations are on going, he issued orders and prevented that being done. Do you think it is a CORRECT DECISION? Supposing a legal case comes up in a court of law in the country against someone who is nominated to contest at an election, can the EC “Order” that court to stop the proceedings? If that happens, what is the use of an “Independent Judiciary” in the country. In the same way, all “Law Enforcement Agencies” (that includes FCID) in the country MUST be left alone to carry out their “duty bound” duties and functions AT ALL TIMES, without any interference from any other Institution or Person. I know, some of the political representatives met him and wanted FCID to suspend summoning some of the contestants in relations to on going investigations. In that decision making he should have firmly said “NO”, “I cannot do it because that process is within the purview of the “Law Enforcement” of the country”. If this the “Election Commission” and the “Commissioner” we expect to create in the future, then better take a serious assessment and redesign our strategies for the future. I still hope and trust this Commissioner will proceed with ACTION as he SAYS and deal with this DIRTY HABIT of distribution of GOODIES by Political Parties and the Contestants irrespective of their STANDINGS. The “VOTER” must not be allowed to be “DEVALUED” and “DEGRADED” by these types of “Hand Outs” and “Dirty Bastards” in the political field.

  • 0
    0

    Bribes galore- including sil redi. What is EC (macco) doing about this. He should send a note disqualifying these bribe givers.

  • 2
    0

    “He can’t imprison MR or send him abroad for trial without an insurrection. God only knows what will happen after that.”

    The apparent popularity is to some extent a mirage created by people who have all to loose if MR is not in power. The popularity among the common people may fade when reality sinks in. Our people, especially the southerners are a grateful lot. They view the defection of MS as a teacherous act. But views can change if the benefits to the country are real, visible and far spread. That is what RW has to achieve.

  • 0
    0

    Bribery, or as in Sinhalese “pagga”, has always been a part of Sri Lanka’s culture just as Buddhism has been.

  • 0
    0

    Who wouldn’t like money. Remember the bribe that was paid by the LTTE and accepted by no other than HILLARY Clinton in her 2008 presidential election campaign that was caught so she had to return it with a big apology.If she was not caught, then she would have gladly kept it. So what would one expect from a Poor country like Sri Lanka?

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