EC needs more teeth to check media polls law violations - NPP | Sunday Observer

EC needs more teeth to check media polls law violations - NPP

7 June, 2020

The National People’s Power (NPP) has submitted its proposals to the Election Commission after the latter had called for proposals from political parties prior to formulating regulations for the upcoming election. The NPP consisting of 28 groups is led by the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP).

According to former (JVP) parliamentarian Bimal Ratnayake, the party presented its proposals on May 31. One of the main points they raised is the role of the media during elections. Given the current Covid-19 making the situation already unfavourable for political campaigns, Ratnayake said the party proposed that the Election Commission should have far greater power to take action against state and private media which violates electoral regulations this time around.

“We also noted that the EC must prevent politicians from gaining political advantage by distributing state funds to people as relief for the pandemic,” he said. While Ratnayake noted that providing relief to the people is vital at this juncture, politicians should not be allowed to gain favour from such activities.

Ratnayake said that it was important to create a level playing field for all political movements in the upcoming elections. However, he said the pandemic will impact the NPP’s voter base and will be disadvantageous to them.

“We are a party that often moves with people and hold discussions. We ask for their votes after this,” he said adding that even if they adhere to health guidelines people will not be willing to attend meetings given the situation.

“People will be reluctant to join the election campaign,” he said. According to Ratnayake, this will lead to more powerful parties to use their resources to gather votes. “It will not be a level playing field,” he said.