UNP Challenges Election Result
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 12 January 2000, 16:04 GMT]
The legality and the propriety of the recent Sri Lankan Presidential election has been challenged in the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka by the opposition United National Party.
The petition sought a directive ordering a fresh Presidential Election. It also sought a declaration that the election of Chandrika was void in law.
United National Party General Secretary Gamini Athukorale filed the petition.
President Kumaratunge, Commissioner of Elections, and the former Acting Commissioner of Elections are cited as Respondents in the petition.
The petition said that the first Respondent President address to the electors exceeding the time allotted to her by law. She even addressed the voters on days when such addresses by Presidential candidates were prohibited by law.
Acting Commissioner of Elections had issued six lakhs of ballot papers to the Jaffna District Retuning Officer while the total number of residents was in fact only three lakhs. It must be noted that this was brought to the notice of the Acting Elections Commissioner at the relevant time.
Thirty thousand Samurthi workers who are not entitled place postal votes were extended the facility of postal voting in violation of the law.
The Acting Commissioner of Elections had issued one hundred thousand extra ballot papers in addition to the number of registered voters to the Returning Officer Gampaha.
Thirty seven incidents of election violence had occurred on the election on days prior to the election in several parts of the country.
There were complaints of intimidation, ballot box stuffing and intimidation of voters and UNP supporters at Polling booths.
There had been an overall failure to comply with the Presidential Election Act, the petition concluded.
The petition filed by the UNP General Secretary through Samararatne Associates, is settled by President's Counsel K.N. Choksy Ronald Perera, A.P.Nile, H.P.Mohideen, and T.Wimalachandran.