Sri Lanka's local polls end with over 70% turnout

Sri Lanka's local polls end with over 70% turnout

Polling for the Local Government election began at 7.00am today at more than 13,000 polling centres across the island.

In Sri Lanka, counting of votes is underway for the local body elections held on Saturday. Accordingly, this election campaign is held peaceful.

Voting was largely peaceful except for few individual incidents.

Police Spokesman, Superintendent of Police Ruwan Gunasekara said that the officers will be deployed throughout the island, for election-related duties and to maintain law and order while the election is taking place today and in the immediate aftermath of the polls.

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He further explained that under the new system a people can appoint a representative responsible for administration of their area and the voters therefore will have the opportunity to meet their representative and discuss the issues in their area to find solutions.

Police said that these security measures had been taken following a request made to this effect by the Election Commission. The election will also witness 25 percent women's quota for the first time, a crucial success for a long struggle by women's rights activists in the country. I would also like to extend my thanks to all Government Officials for their work.

In the local polls, which will elect 8375 councilors, according to Sri Lanka's Election Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya, there are 24 municipal councils, 41 urban councils and 275 pradeshiya sabhas, the legislative bodies that preside over the third-tier municipalities in the country. Under the mixed electoral voting system 60 percent of the candidates are being elected under the first-past-the-post system while 40 percent will be elected through the proportional representation system.

In the Jaffna Peninsula, 468,482 registered voters are voting in 521 voting centers to elect for 17 local government bodies and select 402 members for out of 3376 candidates.

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