Monk’s dual nominations unlawful – EC

By J.T. de Silva

Election Commission Chairman, Mahinda Deshapriya, said a Buddhist Monk had submitted nominations from two political Parties to contest the 5 August General Election, and asserted that this was unlawful.

He said that Ven. Kolonne Sirishantha Vijaya Thera had submitted nominations to contest the coming Poll both on the Ape Janabala Party and the Jana Setha Peramuna ticket from the Ratnapura District.

Deshapriya, however, warned that even if the Monk were to be elected, he will not be able to occupy a seat in Parliament.

The Ratnapura Deputy Election Commissioner said at the time of the acceptance of nomination papers for the Ratnapura District, objections in this regard had been raised by the Leader of the Ratnapura District team of the UNP. But he averred that the Ratnapura District Returning Officer had still accepted the nomination paper according to rules laid out in the Election Act.

Meanwhile, the monk has submitted a letter to the EC, stating that he is only contesting the coming Poll on the Jana Setha Peramuna ticket. The Ratnapura Deputy Election Commissioner explained that the letter submitted by the monk has been referred to the Legal Division of the EC for instructions. He added the monk has so far failed to submit his applicant identity card to the EC.

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