EU, Election Commissioner discuss NorthEast poll arrangements

[TamilNet, Monday, 31 October 2005, 11:54 GMT]
A delegation from the European Union Election Observation Mission led by Mr. Cushnahan and accompanied by the Head of the EU Delegation to Sri Lanka, Ambassador Julian Wilson, and by the EU EOM Election Expert Ms. Idoia Aranceta met the Election Commissioner today, at 11.30 am at the Election Secretariat. Issues related to polling arrangements in NorthEast was one of the main issues discussed in the meeting, a press release from EOM issued in Colombo Monday said.

Excerpts from the press release follow:

Cushnahan in Batticaloa“The meeting was very constructive and cordial during which we raised a number of issues. The Election Commissioner, Mr. Dayananda Dissanayake expressed his concern as to what might happen in the North and East during the election. Although he stressed that he did not want to interfere in our decision making process, he asked that we take into consideration these concerns.

I asked the Election Commissioner where the location of cluster polling stations would be in the North and the East. He informed our delegation that it would be within close proximity to the locations used for the 2004 Parliamentary Election.

On the issue of re-polling certain areas if there was significant electoral malpractice, our delegation inquired as to what timetable he would employ. He confirmed that if he was going to decide to re-poll any area that he would make that decision on the 18th of November and that voting would take place on the 19th.

Both sides agreed to maintain contact throughout the remainder of the election campaign.

Our delegation thanks the Election Commissioner, Mr. Dayananda Dissanayake for the kind and co-operative attitude shown during the meeting”.

In aother press release, the EOM said that "the Chief Observer of the European Union Election Observation Mission, Mr. John Cushnahan, will have a meeting with the UNP candidate to the Presidency of Sri Lanka, Mr. Ranil Wickramasinghe today at 17.00 am at no. 2, Cambridge Terrace, Colombo 7.

He will be accompanied by the Deputy Chief Observer of the EU EOM to Sri Lanka, Ms. Delphine Blanchet.

The EU EOM Chief Observer has also requested to meet with all the other candidates to the Presidency."

 

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