The Elections Commission would issue the Gazette notification calling for nominations on October 2, 2017 for the elections to the North Central, Sabaragamuwa and the Eastern Provincial Council, an official said yesterday.
The term of all these three Provincial Councils will lapse by October 1.
Accordingly, the Commission has authority to proceed with steps for calling for fresh elections.
Commission’s Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya told the Daily Mirror that the pending elections could be postponed only with the Amendment of Article 154 E of the Constitution.
The relevant Article says:
“A Provincial Council shall, unless sooner dissolved, continue for a period of five years from the date appointed for its first meeting and the expiration of the said period of five years shall operate as dissolution of the Council”.
“The Commission believes that this could not be amended only with a two-thirds majority in Parliament. This is a matter linked with people’s franchise. Therefore, the Commission believes that it would require the approval of people by referendum. However, it has to be determined by the Supreme Court,” Mr. Deshapriya said.
The Elections Commission has communicated its position on nomination calling to the representatives of the political parties last week. (Kelum Bandara)