The Elections Commission (EC) recently thwarted a move by Galle District UNP MP Wijepala Hettiarachchi to donate Rs.50,000 each as housing aid among selected families in his constituency under the ‘Gamperaliya’ programme, following the declaration of the presidential election, an official said.
The UNP MP had sent letters to selected individuals requesting them to attend the UNP ‘Bala Mandala’ meeting held last Sunday in the Akmeemana electorate to collect the donations.
This was brought to the notice of the Elections Commission by People’s Action for Free and Fair Elections (PAFFREL) that received a copy of the letter. According to the document, the event had been organised to support presidential hopeful Sajith Premadasa. EC took prompt action to stop the event.
According to the election law, distribution of such assistance amounts to vote-catching inducement. (Kelum Bandara)