The Elections Commission has begun accepting applications for postal votes from yesterday and will do so till September 30, Director General of Elections Saman Sri Rathnayake said yesterday. The Commission requests those who are eligible to cast postal votes to submit their applications on or before that date as incomplete or late applications would be rejected. All public officers/ employees, school Principals/ Teachers who are likely to be deployed for election duties at the forthcoming presidential election may apply for the postal vote, Rathnayaka told the Daily News. Officers and employees of the Sri Lanka Transport Board, Posts Department, Sri Lanka Railways and members of the Armed Forces, Police Department engaged in providing security in all parts of the island and members of the Civil Security Force engaged in active security service are also eligible to apply for postal voting.
The Commission will publish a Gazette notification with regard to the procedure that must be followed with regard to recruitments to the public service in the run up to the Presidential Elections.
Rathnayake said that any recruitments made in a hasty manner without following the stipulated procedure would be illegal. “If such hurried recruitments were made during this period, the relevant officials who do so would be in trouble. The Treasury approval must be taken and the stipulated number of dates must be given to apply and for calling of interviews. If that process is followed then the appointment procedure must have been started before the announcement of the elections,” he said.
When asked as to whether these provisions could be implemented during the upcoming Presidential Election if the legislation is passed before November, Rathnayake however pointed out that it was too late.
“The Bill has been gazetted only after the proclamation of the Election Commission declaring the Presidential Election. The Bill has to be passed by Parliament. The provisions of this legislation will not apply for the upcoming Presidential Election,” he said.