Rejection of nominations SLPP in the doldrums | Sunday Observer

Rejection of nominations SLPP in the doldrums

The rejection of nominations to 23 local bodies came as a hard blow to the contending political parties, currently engrossed in an intensified battle to secure power at the Local Government level.

This was felt more by the new party representing the Joint Opposition, Sri Lanka Podu Jana Peramuna (SLPP) with the symbol ‘Pohottuwa’ which saw six of its 93 LG nominations being rejected allegedly due to technical flaws in their nomination lists.

A total of 23 nomination papers of different political parties were rejected by the Returning Officers on Thursday at the close of nominations. The elections officials accepted nominations from political parties and independent groups for 93 LG bodies from December 11 to 14 noon.

SLPP nominations were rejected at several areas such as, Mahiyanganaya, Badulla, Agalawatta, Panadura, Weligama and Maharagama.

Mahiyanganaya SLPP nominations were rejected due to the lack of female participation, while the Badulla nomination was rejected due to the number of candidates falling short by one. Agalawatta and Panadura nominations were rejected because the party’s General Secretary had failed to sign the documents. The place and time of signatures affixed to the supplementing affidavits had also stated it as December 17 instead of Dec 14.

In the Maharagama nomination list, although female representation was in accordance with the regulation, one female candidate had been marked as ‘male’ thus disqualifying the nominations. The Weligama SLPP nominations were rejected as the authorized person for the party has failed to sign the nomination papers and was signed by a lawyer who was not authorized.

As per election laws and regulations nomination lists had to be handed over by an authorized person. An authorized person can either be the secretary of the party or a candidate. For the upcoming local government elections all parties had to appoint and inform the details of the authorized person by December 8.

The leader of the Podujana Peramuna Prof.G.L.Peiris told the media, the party will seek court intervention to fight the decision as they were of the view that rejection of their lists were not in keeping with the law.

Two nomination papers of the SLFP, for Padiyathalawa, too were rejected allegedly due to nominations not being handed over by the authorized person despite him being present at the time of handing over the nominations.

The Dehiattakandiya nominations list has fallen short of female representation as well as that it was handed over by an unauthorized person, despite the presence of the authorized person at the time of handing over the nominations.

The other rejected papers belonged to minor parties in the fray including United People’s Alliance (UPA), the coalition between All Ceylon Makkal Congress (ACMC) and United Peace Alliance led by former SLMC General Secretary Hassan Ali.


UPA’s nominations were rejected in the Akkaraipaththu local government area since there were no authorized personnel to handover nominations and were to be handed over by the party general secretary, who only arrived at the Kachchceri at 11.55 a.m. after visiting several other areas, handing over nominations.

TNA nominations were rejected in both Digamadulla and Samanthurai, due to them being handed over by candidates and not the authorized person nominated by the party.

With the new election laws coming into place making female representation mandatory many parties seem to have fallen short of the 25 percent requirement of female representation for each party.

Local Government and Provincial Councils Minister Faiszer Musthapha and SLFP General Secretary and Minister Mahinda Amaraweera said they too would seek legal action to get the decision of the Returning Officers on the two SLFP nomination papers that were over-turned. “We have already submitted the two lists to the legal team of the SLFP, they are currently studying if there is a way we could reverse the decision through a court case,” Minister Amaraweera said.

Technical faults

According to the ELections Commision the papers were rejected on the basis of several technical faults, for not having stipulated women candidates, not having the stipulated number of total candidates, handing over the nomination papers by a different person other than the mandated officer and the absence of the party secretary’s signature on the nomination paper.

Elections Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya said several factors contributed to the nomination papers being rejected. “They (party representatives) wait till the last moment to hand over the nomination papers, some leave the premises and hand over the papers at auspicious times, as a result there is no time to correct any mistakes or flaws that might be there in the list,” he said.

We don’t want to reject nomination papers on technical grounds, as we think that the election of members is a right of the people, but this is the existing law. If the official parties feel that there has been an infringement of their rights, they can go to courts.

But, the Deputy Elections Commisioner M.M. Mohamed said the Courts have upheld the decision of the Returning Officer in the past. “Yet, I cannot vouch that it would be the case this time around too, the Appeals Court might take a differing view,” he added.

The nominations for the balance 248 LG bodies will be accepted from December 18 to 21 midday. And the election date will be announced by the Election Commission shortly after that.