Candidates used religious symbols – charge Election Observers

Candidates used religious symbols – charge Election Observers

Candidates used religious symbols – charge Election Observers

Written by Staff Writer

22 Mar, 2014 | 8:22 am

Election observers charge that certain candidates have used religious symbols for election propaganda activities.

Speaking to News1st Executive Director of the PAFFREL Organisation,  Rohana Hettiarachchi said that two such cases have been reported in this regard which includes incidents where a candidate in the Hambantota District used statues of Lord Buddha for his election propaganda activities and where another candidate in the Kalutara District distributed propaganda material containing the image of the Sacred Temple of the Tooth Relic.

National Organiser at the National Elections Monitoring Centre, Rasanga Harishchandra speaking to News1st said that the use of any such symbol by a candidate or a group for election propaganda activities is not appropriate and went on to make a request from such parties to abstain from engaging in such activities in the future.

Finally, we made an inquiry in this regard from Executive Director of the CaFFE organisation in this regard.

The Executive Director said that  the Elections Department has issued a set of guidelines on the use of religious symbols in election propaganda activities and the continuous violation of the guidelines can be seen in this instance.

Explaining further, he said that such activity can create tense situations and can lead to a breakdown in the peace shared by various ethnicities.

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