Proportional representation system – the most democratic electoral system: Vijitha Herath

Proportional representation system – the most democratic electoral system: Vijitha Herath

Proportional representation system – the most democratic electoral system: Vijitha Herath

Written by Staff Writer

22 May, 2015 | 2:25 pm

JVP MP Vijitha Herath says that the proportional representation system is the most democratic electoral system in operation in the world.

The MP made this statement while speaking at a conference organised by the Bar Association of Sri Lanka.

Attention was also drawn to the 20th Amendment to the Constitution. Speaking at the event JVP MP Vijitha Herath stated:

If you take a look, the proportional representation system that exists at present, it is a system that protects the fundamentals of democracy. But in practice, the basic democratic feature of that system couldn’t be protected in Sri Lanka as a result of the political culture that exists in our country.

Also we would like to align ourselves with the needs of the public. But, if we are to do that, the new system that is to be created must protect the fundamentals of the existing one. If you take it simply, if a political party, or group, bearing a certain political opinion, obtain a percentage of public votes, their representation in parliament should be in proportion to the percentage of votes they received.

In conclusion, he stated  that this is because new things only come out when various political powers are in equilibrium. The 19th Amendment is like that. However, it is the turmoil that exists in the political arena that has prevented the 19th Amendment from achieving its goal. Certain amendments within it, caused harm to its fundamentals. This could happen to electoral reforms too.

Meanwhile, Minister of Justice, Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe says that it has not been possible to reach an agreement with regard to the 20th Amendment to the Constitution.

He further stated:

We proposed for the introduction of a a fair election system. This request was made. However there is hidden story as well. What we said is the appointment of a MP who will be accountable to the electorate and abolish the preferential voting system. We have understood this. What will be introduced needs to be a simple one. Under the present system 5 percent of the votes are not valid. If 10 million vote 500,000 are rejected votes. This is a serious issue. We agree to this with the stance that all political parties must be given due place …

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