Delimitation Drama Continues
- Mustapha refused to accept the report when Asoka Peiris attempted to hand over the report in the presence of the media
- Elections Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya had said earlier the Local Government elections can be held within two months after the receipt of the Delimitation Committee report
by Ashanthi Warunasuriya
The delimitation drama continued on Friday with Local Government and Provincial Councils Minister Faizer Mustapha saying he was expecting the report from the National Delimitation Commission that afternoon but it did not happen.
Chairman of the Committee Asoka Peiris had informed the Secretary to the Ministry that the final report was ready and can be handed over to the Minister last Friday afternoon. However the Ministry later said it was informed by the Commission that the report is not ready yet.
This comes after there was high drama at a press conference earlier in the week where the Minister refused to accept the report of the Commission as it did not have the signatures of all the commission members. Mustapha refused to accept the report when Asoka Peiris attempted to hand over the report in the presence of the media.
Subsequently high drama ensued between Mustapha and Peiris and everything was recorded by the media.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe is to meet party leaders this week to discuss the Delimitation Committee report. Mustapha said that Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and he hopes to reach a consensus on the report during talks expected to be held tomorrow.
The release of the report by the Delimitation Committee reviewing the demarcation of electoral boundaries in local government wards was to be released last month. However it was postponed owing to some administrative issues.
The Ministry of Local Government appointed the five-member committee on December 1, 2015 to look into discrepancies regarding demarcation of boundaries and shortcomings of the report submitted by the National Delimitation Commission (NDC).
It was entrusted to carryout demarcation activities after reviewing the appeals made with regards to the demarcation of 206 out of 336 local government areas. Elections Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya had said earlier the Local Government elections can be held within two months after the receipt of the Delimitation Committee report.
Meanwhile, the United National Party (UNP) said that Minister Faizer Mustapha must resolve issues related to his Ministry away from the camera.
Deputy Minister and UNP Parliamentarian Ajith P. Perera said that a media circus was staged last week over the report by the Delimitation Committee.
He said that the subject Minister and the Delimitation Committee should have resolved the issue over the report away from the media.
Ajith P. Perera says the UNP wants the Local Government (LG) elections to be staged soon and so Minister Mustapha must ensure the issue on delimitation is resolved in order to hold the election.