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EC Chief responds to queries on still-pending gazette on LG Polls

Anyone questioning the non-issuance of the gazette declaring the date of the upcoming Local Government Election has no proper understanding about the manner in which such affairs are carried out, Chairman of the Election Commission Nimal Punchihewa said, joining an interview aired on Hiru TV.

Q: Do you even have any confidence that this election will be held on March 09?

“What lies here is not a problem of trust. As a Commission, we’re obliged to serve a legal responsibility. We’re currently serving that legal responsibility. Accordingly, we’re planning to hold the Election on March 09. The initial matters in this regard are being sorted out.”

Q: Some questioned why was the gazette in this regard not issued..

“So you see, such sentiments have been made without any understanding or comprehensive study into the matter. Because, the Commission is not the one to declare the date of a Local Government Election. Such affairs are being carried out by the respective returning officer of the institution. What the Commission does is approving the date. In general practice, after the nominations are taken in, the returning officers of those areas declare a date upon agreement. Then, a date alone is not sufficient for a gazette issuance, for the schedules on the number of institutions, the names of the contesting parties, the names of the candidates, the electoral divisions and etc. shall also be included.”


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