Government announces election security measures
[TamilNet, Saturday, 23 January 1999, 13:49 GMT]
The Sri Lankan government announced this morning that special security arrangements have been made to provide protection for the North-western Provincial Council (NWPC) Elections due on Monday.
A large number of police personnel have been deployed to provide security for election activities from the commencement of vote casting till the end of counting, government officials said.
M.P.Arunthavachelvam, the Deputy Commissioner of elections, said that all the arrangements for the elections have been completed and the officials who will conduct the polls will leave for their stations today.
Four hundred and forty six candidates are contesting the 52 seats in the council.
Nine hundred and sixty one thousand eligible voters have been registered in the Kurunegala district, while 398,500 have been registered in the Puttalam district for the election.
According to the Department of Elections the People's Alliance (PA), United National Party (UNP), Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) and National Leftists Front (NLF) are contesting the elections.
Meanwhile sources said that a curfew might be enforced soon after the polls are closed on Monday to prevent violence.
They said a large number of police personnel have already been deployed in the streets and several road check posts have been put up throughout the province.
The election campaign has been marked by widespread violence and according to the police at least 700 election related incidents of violence have been reported since the nominations were closed on December 7.