19 October, 2017

Friday Forum Wants EC To Insist “That 152 Riot Squads” Be Deployed Under Him

The Friday Forum has today written to the Commissioner of Elections demanding him to follow certain actions to safeguard a free and fair election.

Prof. Savitri Goonesekere

Prof. Savitri Goonesekere

“It essential that the role and mandate of the Police and others involved in providing security for the elections are explained to them, particularly the Officers In Charge of police stations island wide so that those breaking the law would be dealt with impartially. We note with concern the incidents already in the news, particularly the on-going saga in Wanduramba. It is also ominous to note the deployment of 152 riot squads and setting up of road blocks in the run up to the Elections to quell any unrest, as stated in the Daily Mirror newspaper of 24th December, quoting the Police Media Spokesman. We call upon you to insist that they be deployed under you and get their instructions from you, as the common purpose seems to be to ensure a ‘peaceful election’” the Friday Forum said.

We publish below the letter in full;

 

Mr. Mahinda Deshapriya,

Commissioner of Elections,

Elections Department,

Rajagiriya.

Dear Sir,

The upcoming Presidential Election in January 2015 has, more than any other election before this, generated much interest and involvement amongst all Sri Lankans, as it is seen as an election that will decide on whether democratic governance with respect for law and order and independence of institutions will be restored or if the type of executive presidency we have seen in the recent past will continue. While we do understand the hard task that will be faced by your staff and all those responsible for conducting a free and fair election, the Friday Forum calls on you to do the following.

  • We call upon you to publish in all major newspapers, in all 3 languages, the relevant sections of the Presidential Elections Act, particularly Part V which lists out actions deemed to be election malpractices, so that the public could be made aware and report these actions to your Department, wherever they are carried out, with relevant proof.
  • Publicize through all forms of media, the documents that would be accepted as valid proof of identity for voting purposes so that it would not be left to the discretion of the Presiding Officer of any polling station.
  • We call upon you to give a comprehensive briefing of election procedures to all those involved in the conduct of the polls, especially those in charge of polling stations, polling agents, counting officers, Election monitors and observers.
  • The Friday Forum considers it essential that the role and mandate of the Police and others involved in providing security for the elections are explained to them, particularly the Officers In Charge of police stations island wide so that those breaking the law would be dealt with impartially. We note with concern the incidents already in the news, particularly the on-going saga in Wanduramba. It is also ominous to note the deployment of 152 riot squads and setting up of road blocks in the run up to the Elections to quell any unrest, as stated in the Daily Mirror newspaper of 24th December, quoting the Police Media Spokesman. We call upon you to insist that they be deployed under you and get their instructions from you, as the common purpose seems to be to ensure a ‘peaceful election’.
  • In order to report any election malpractice, we note that your website has a procedure to e-mail any complaint to you under the heading ‘Tell the Commissioner’. We ask that you ensure that e- mails can be sent in all 3 languages together with photos, video clips and documents in formats commonly used in mobile phones and cameras. This account will also have to be manned 24/7 in order that your staff alert you of incidents being reported by the public.
  • We call upon you to also publicize widely a hotline number that is manned 24/7, so that people from all over can phone in and report incidents as they unfold on election day. The assistance of PAFFREL, CaFFE and other organizations committed to the conducting of fair elections could be sought for this purpose.
  • The 2013 Registered electors list according to Polling Divisions is up on your website. It would be good if the 2014 list is put up prior to the Elections as it must be finalized by now.

The Nation is looking to you as the supreme authority constitutionally empowered to safeguard the electoral process in our land at this crucial election, and the Friday Forum urges you to use all the authority vested in your office to ensure this.

Yours Sincerely, 

Jayantha Dhanapala                                 Professor Savitri Goonesekere            Shanthi Dias

On behalf of The Friday Forum

 

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Latest comments

  • 4
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    Prof. Savitri Goonesekere

    RE: Friday Forum Wants EC To Insist “That 152 Riot Squads” Be Deployed Under Him

    Also let Mr. Mahinda Deshapriya,

    Commissioner of Elections,

    Elections Department,

    Rajagiriya.

    Let him know that he is facing criminal charges that could result him being hanged or shot by the people…

    • 1
      3

      Hey, hey. Maaru Sia aiya is already in trouble for revealing plans to shut down Katunayaka airport and drag MR out of the Temple Trees on 9 January.

      Now you are revealing our plans for the Elecion Commissioner.

      Give your brain a rest (by simply getting up – because you are sitting on it!) before making stupid announceents like this.

      You are ruining our already ‘fock all’ chances of winning.

    • 2
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      Prof. Savitri Goonesekere

      Another (ILLEGAL) Mahinda election project washed away

      http://www.lankatruth.com/home/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=8081:another-mahinda-election-project-washed-away-&catid=42:smartphones&Itemid=74

      Another manoeuvre of the Rajapaksa faction to win the presidential election by hook or by crook has failed. The intervention at the last moment by the Commissioner of Elections completely broke down an attempt to post 200,000 letters to Army personnel.

      After the media exposed the manoeuvre the Commissioner of Elections ordered the Post Master General to stop the distribution of relevant letters.

      The Post Master General had confirmed the attempt to distribute the said letters and the media spokesman of the Army had tried to justify the attempt to distribute letters. At a media briefing the spokesman for the Army had said having the photograph of the supreme commander would not make the letter a project of the election campaign.

      When there is a tendency for majority of Army personnel and the families to vote against Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa the letters were to be sent as an attempt to pressurize Army personnel. The media also had revealed earlier that an exercise, initiated by the Army Commander, was being conducted to pressurize Army personnel and their families with a series of lectures that included video scenes.

      • 1
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        Will this E.C. be able to put in writing to the Secretary MoD that no members of the Forces leave their Camps on 8th/9th January, without THE ECs EXPRESS SANCTION.

        This should be copied to Lalith Weeratunga and an acknowledgement sought by return.

        The movement of the Army to places anew like Polonnaruwa should be re-allocated
        to their original places as at day of Nomination. This includes Army activity
        in the N/E from 7th morning and patrolling be curbed. Only on the request of
        the Police that they can leave their Camps for Official work.

        WILL the EC have the guts to do his duty??

  • 2
    0

    Thank you Prof.Savitri Goonesekere and Friday Forum.

    The country has lost the confidence of the Police.They do not enforce Law and Order any longer.The entire Police force has been Politicised.The only hpope is the Election Commissioner.Hope he will stand by the country and ensure the will of the People is enforced.

  • 3
    0

    Also ad the following;

    1) Use video at each polling station
    2) all candidates agents to be allowed inside the bus that transport the fully sealed ballot boxes to the counting center at all times
    3) ban camps of candidates supporters gathering within 500 meters of each polling booth
    4) ban politicians from entering the polling stations other than to cast their own ballot , if legal as candidates agent to visit , then allow only the agent inside with police escort/ witness
    5) recording of vote tally to be transparent and during the process of delivery to the EC office , witnessed fully by all candidates agents and signed by them

  • 0
    0

    Too late, the EC just changed his name from Mr. Mahinda Deshapriya, in to Mr Mahinda, head of Mahindodaya’s Election Committee

  • 3
    0

    You are asking someone to act against
    his supreme leader who is a thug, criminal
    and a theif. In this context, EC is just a
    figure head or a toothless tiger. I still
    believe majority of Srilankans may be able
    to vote for CC Maithree to put an end this
    criminal family kleptocracy despite all the
    obstacles they have in achieving that.

  • 0
    4

    Is this woman Ms Pillai’s sister ?…

    • 0
      0

      This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

    • 3
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      K.A Sumanasekera

      “Is this woman Ms Pillai’s sister ?…”

      What do you think?

      Are you a male chauvinist p**?

      I can assure you she is definitely not the sister of Gannapathi Pillai (Udaya Gammanpila).

    • 0
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      Professor Savithri is in an entirely different universe, when compared with your sister, for nobility, upbringing, education, philanthropy and humanity.

  • 4
    0

    A good call by Friday Forum. It is better to hold the EC accountable for whatever occurs before, during, and after the elections. This is the time to ask him to do the right thing for the people. No one can trust the regime, and what it might do in desperation.

    Supposedly the hero the regime protects from UN investigations Major General Shavendra de Silva, has been recalled from his present post in the UN, back to the country. Speculations are his expertise ( and ability to be violent if necessary, maybe) are needed during the elections. Is it to quell any protests, Rajapaksa style? Welliweriya comes to mind.

    • 2
      5

      Shitro

      “A good call by Friday Forum.”

      No wonder you like such rubbish that will go straight to the waste bin at the election Commission.

      Shavendra Silva is a war hero and he is loved by all people of the Aryan race. This obviously does not include agents of foreign interests – dollar kakkas.

      • 2
        0

        Sticks and stone can break my bones, but words will never hurt me. That so called war hero and others in Sri Lanka, who love to throw that word around to take credit, have no guts to face an international investigation, nor be brave enough to face the consequences of that inquiry. They stall, stall, stall. Big cowards.

        You can keep the denial going, and resort to insults. Desperation can do that.

        Thank goodness for Friday Forum, they are doing the citizens work by demanding accountability, something missing in the ruling family.

      • 0
        0

        Pena Kiyanna,

        prey tell us , are you going to stick to this ” Pena Kiyanna pen name ” now on or planning to switch back to use the other hundred odd “pen names” which you had been using ,we still remember CT exposing your silly games, mate . don’t forget you have been warned !

  • 3
    0

    Friday Forum

    Excellent initiative. From now on 24 hour vigilance is necessary from Friday Forum

  • 3
    0

    Good idea but it will not happen will it?

  • 1
    0

    The nation witness widespread abuse of authority in election adverting. And therefore we demand a clear and unambiguous undertaking from the main opposition candidate through a supplementary manifesto (cannot see in the original) to regulate all elections through an Act of Parliament to realise the following.
    • To Establish a Independent Election Commission to regulate all elections with adequate punitive power
    • To impose a blanket ban of all election adverts in all public places to stop unscrupulous wealthy groups from gaining undue advantage and thereby to ban all forms distortion
    • To forbid all ‘paid adverts’ in both electronic and print media to stop affluent class having unequal access to advertising
    • To permit only a small number of party political broadcasts through electronic media in the run up to election time
    • To limit displaying of election advert only on ‘private properties’ to the size not more than A4 size, displaying only the name of the party seeking voter support
    These restrictions are in place in the other ‘civilised nations’ where true democracy exist to offer level playing field in which money interests cannot gain an unfair advantage which will block out the valid arguments of less wealthy groups and thus distort public debate

  • 1
    0

    IF MR could buy CJ of Sri Lanka it would not be difficult for To buy or intimidate Election commissioner or for that matter any one; All army, Air force, Navy are under his finger so what we could expect. You could demand him but it would be into deaf ear.

  • 2
    2

    Friday Forum, who the hell do you think to demand such things from EC.
    You guys are a bunch of “western influenced Pandiths” who cater the so called english speaking “Colombians” in the capital city of Sri Lanka !
    Your stupid views are not shared by the majority of citizens who you call “Bayyo” ! But they are much more intelligent than your bunch of Friday Forum !

  • 0
    4

    EC should not involve command police forces. That is non of your business of EC.

    That is against democracy norms guided by EC rule of Sri Lankan governance of democracy and its rules of law.

    Dr Savthiri Gunasekara…. that proposal sent police forces is violating principle of democracy. Used gun rule of politics by replace for ballot is not peaceful democracy of our country.

    Dr Savithari has not right do such proposal?

  • 3
    0

    Will the EC Mahinda Desapriya ,also be abducted and not be seen in public for three days like the former EC? .

  • 1
    0

    Riot Squads, Riot Squads, yum,yum,yum we are getting closer and closer to the Sri Lankan Spring. Now that SLT has unblocked Colombo Telegraph Dialog seems to be blocking it.

  • 1
    0

    The plain truth is MR is the sole authority of all pubic offices in Sri Lanka, including CJ and AG. Election Commission is nothing for his monster.

  • 0
    0

    You do not have to worry that we will go back to JRJ era where ballot were stuffed. Where were you guys when those elections and meddling of the courts were done during UNP time. The police being instructed to be inactive for one week due to their orders were legendary. You do not have to worry of such development. This government is capable of doing the right thing. You should not account for few unruly members behaviour. They will be dealt with at the right time. It is pity that the president has placed such a faith in its members to behave right. This is an example democracy has it faults and the leaders should discipline its members.

  • 0
    0

    EC is awaiting for a Diplomatic Posting once Rajapaksha is re-elected.

  • 0
    0

    FF wants 13 A Plus for Vellalas, which is their Holy Mission ..Right..

    Ranil has guaranteed it to Sambandan,

    If implemented, East, West, North South and the others will also have it with all the bells and whistles what the TNA demanded.

    How can they have the next Presidential Election , when SLMC, YNA, CBK, JHU, JVP CWC, and even Muththettu have their own Police Forces.

    Will the FF write this proposal in the CC Manifesto , that EC should get total control of all PC Police Forces from the day the Election is declared until the day the results are declared.

    If FF can do it before the current election , even I may tick Sira’s box.

  • 0
    0

    All employees attached to various factories, farms and other business organisations managed by Army personnel of CIVIL PROTECTION DEPARTMENT casted their postal votes last week in an unjustifiable and undemocratic manner. All these employees did not know that they had registered for postal votes because they had not signed any documents to do so.

    The army personnel who managed these organisations collected the personal information about their employees from GS’s office and informed the GS office to register these employees for postal voting.

    Only on the day of the postal vote, these employees were informed that they had to cast their postal votes on that day.

    The Election Commissioner has somehow or other came to know this arrangement and sent the monitors to various areas where the postal voting were to be held. The army personnel met these monitors and did allow them to monitor.

    In the meantime the army personnel demanded their employees to vote for “MAHINDA RAJAPAKSA” and every employee has voted in the presence of his/her supervisor or head of the department (again army personnel)and showed them and gave the balot paper to Army staff.

    It appears that about 500,000 men and women are working in the organisations attached to CIVIL PROTECTION DEPARTMENT.

    Therefore nearly 500,000 votes have already been in the Postal Balot Boxes in favour of Mahinda Rajapaksa.

    Thee are no news as to what happen to the monitors sent by the Election Commissioner.

    How many such things are going to happen on 8 January 2015?

    Even if you bring 100,000 monitors even from other countries, it is of no use and its merely waste of money. There are no freedom for the election monitors.

    It is a pity that the majority Sinhala people do not understand what is going on in the country.

    Hon.Mahinda Rajapaksa started spreading hatred and discrimination against Tamils from May 2009. Majority Sinhalese are very happy and enjoy themselves to suppress and oppress Tamils and treat them as third class citizens. They failed to understand that Mahinda was cheating them in the name of Tamils and rule the country as a cruel Dictator.

    The election 2015 has been beautifully planned by Hon.Mahinda Rajapaksa to safeguard his position as an Executive President for another 5 to 10 years.

    Nothing can be done in SriLanka for another decade or more till the majority Sinhala citizens are willing to learn and accept the realities.

  • 0
    0

    Do not waste time. Mahinda can not down with elections. EC Dept under full control of him and election results already prepared and only to announce from computers from China.Only way to remove him Arab Spring and Libiyan type of struggle.

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