The Elections Commission (EC) has said key officials of election monitoring groups found engaging in political activities will be removed from election monitoring at the upcoming presidential election.
In a letter sent to political party secretaries, the EC said only the People's Action For Free and Fair Elections (PAFFREL) and the Center for Monitoring Election Violence (CMEV) have been permitted to monitor the election and enter polling booths.
It said the other monitoring groups would function as external or mobile monitors.
The EC in its letter said it would endorse the request made by Commonwealth Election Action Committee (CEAC), which carried out monitoring activities at the previous national elections to carry out such activities this year as well.
But the EC is yet to approve a request made by the European Union, which had been involved in monitoring activities during the previous national elections to monitor the presidential elections as well.
It said it had decided to have representatives from organisations working with the Sri Lankan Election Commission such as the Association of Asian Election Authorities, The Forum of the Election Management Bodies of South Asia and Malaysia and the Commonwealth Study Centre to carry out election monitoring. (Dayasili Liyanage)