No one had the power to alter the 25% female representation in the Local Councils, Campaign for Free and Fair Elections (CaFFE) Executive Director Keerthi Tennakoon said today.
He also said that the number of members did not increase due to the 25% quota for women.
Addressing a news conference, he said the crisis transpired on account of the ineffective decision to change the First Past the Post (FPP) and the Proportional Representation (PR) systems from 70% - 30% to 60% -40% after the delimitation.
“When the Local Authorities Elections (Amendment) Bill was presented to Parliament, the two percentages were mentioned as 70 percent under the First Past the Post system and 30 percent under the Proportional Representation system.
“But it was inconsiderately altered as 60 percent under the First Past the Post system and 40 percent under the Proportional Representation System. This short-sighted decision led to increase the members of the councils and create an issue in the 25% of women quota,” Tennakoon said.
“Some members try to secure their seats by claiming that the 25% quota for women is the barrier. We insist that nobody can challenge any election laws and if anybody tried to do so, it is of no use,” he added. (Sheain Fernandopulle)