General election on August 5 : Polls Chief

Sri Lanka's parliamentary elections fixed for August 5

by Staff Writer 10-06-2020 | 2:41 PM
COLOMBO (News 1st): The parliamentary elections will be held on August 5, Sri Lanka's National Election Commission (NEC) announced on Wednesday. The date had been decided following a unanimous decision reached between the members of the NEC, its chairman Mahinda Deshapriya said. "We have signed the gazette (announcing the date) and sent it to the government printer," the polls chief told reporters. The parliamentary election had first been postponed from April 25 to June 20 after the COVID-19 started spreading in the country. However, the polls body, last month, informed court that the poll cannot be held in June. This year's election would see health guidelines such as wearing face masks and maintaining physical distance being practiced during the poll. The National Election Commission was constitutionally established to secure the peoples' right to franchise. Amidst many difficulties, the Chairman and the members of the National Elections' Commission have determined and announced a new date for the elections to be held. The people of the country undoubtedly appreciate the efforts of the National Elections' Commission to ensure the health and safety of the people, while securing their constitutionally enshrined democratic rights. A total of 7452 candidates will be contesting from recognized political parties and independent groups at the 2020 parliamentary election. Among them, 3652 candidates will be contesting from recognized political parties, while 3800 will represent independent groups. A total of 313 independent groups will be contesting this year's election. Among the 7452 candidates, 196 individuals will be elected as parliamentarians while the remaining 29 seats in Parliament will be filled through the National List. Two separate entities will contest this year's election from the United National Party which last contested the parliamentary election in 2015. They are the United National Party and the Samagi Jana Balawegaya. Meanwhile, the group that contested under the banner of the United People's Freedom Alliance at the last parliamentary election, will contest under the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna and Sri Lanka Freedom Party in certain districts. A group of members from the People's Liberation Front, locally known as the JVP, will be contesting on the Frontline Socialist Party ticket. The JVP will be contesting the election as the National People's Power Alliance.