Rajapaksa Distributes “Sil Redi” Again In Temples On The Eve Of Polls

An election monitoring organization, Campaign for Free and Fair Elections (CaFFE) has lodged a complaint against UPFA Kurunegala District candidate and former president, Mahinda Rajapaksa accusing him of distributing white Sil cloth at several temples in Kurunegala on Saturday and thus violating election laws.

In their complaint CaFFE says that former president had distributed white cloth at various temples in Kurunegala district while promoting his preference number at religious ceremonies, which amounts to a serious breach of polls laws.

According to the authorities, distribution of Sil Cloths and exhibiting propaganda material, while there is a ban on all election related promotions, amounts to both bribing the voters and breaching laws on polls related publicity.

According to CaFFE, Rajapaksa had arrived at the Bauddaloka Privena in Kurunegala Saturday morning and distributed Sil cloth among the devotees gathered at the temple premises.

The CaFFE said Rajapaksa and supporters had arrived in about 12 vehicles displaying his picture and preference number at several temples in Wariyapola, Demataluwa, Dickvehera, Wedanda, Colombagama and Randeniya.

According to CaFFE although Police officers at some places had cautioned the group Rajapaksa and entourage had acted disregarding such warnings, blatantly violationg polls laws.

According to CaFFE, the distribution of white cloth Saturday morning amount to a violation of election laws since the election propaganda activities ended midnight Friday.

In the last Presidential polls too Rajapaksa faction was accused of distributing Sil Cloths on a large scale and thus violating polls laws.

After the polls Lalith Weeratunga, Secretary to the former president and two others were accused of misusing Rs. 620 million of Telecommunication Regulatory Cxommission (TRC) money for election campaigns of Rajapaksa.

Along with Weeratunga, a coordinator to the former president Watinapaha Somananda Thera and former director general of the TRC Anusha Pelpita were accused of using the money on a project to distribute Sil clothing among voters on Duruthu Poya Day, four days before the January 8 presidential election.


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